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DePue Centennial Officers 

DePue Centeimial committee officers admire Hydroplane, owned by Joe Michelini of Chicago, 
which will run in the A.P.B.A. National "Alky" Championships on Lake DePue. Standing, left to 
right, are: Homer Graham, Centennial Secretary; Robert Seeger of Chicago, Race General Chair- 
man; Gerald Toovey, Centennial General Chairman; Donald Bosnick, Centennial Director; Har- 
old Banick, Centennial Director; and Edward Peterson, Centennial Director. Absent when picture 
was taken was Meyer Serkes, Centennial Treasurer. — Photographer Robert Kruchinski 

The Centennial Planning Committee 

On September 18, 1960, the first meeting of the 
Centennial Planning Committee was called to order 
by Mayor Matt Fassino in the Council Chambers. 

Fassino stated that the village board was not 
the sponsor oi the celebration, but a start had to 
be made, and with the approval of the board, he 
had previously appointed Gerald Toovey temporary 

Toovey, a third generation native, the son of 
Mrs. Marguerite Rauh Toovey, daughter of Mr. and 
Mrs. Fred Rauh Sr., was duly elected permanent 
centennial chairman and took the office that after- 

Homer Graham was elected secretary; Meyer 
Serkes, treasurer; Donald Bosnick, Harold Banich, 
and Edward Peterson, directors. Many representa- 
tives of various organizations v/ere present and the 
groundwork was laid for the 1961 centennial cele- 

Several objectives were discussed and plans set 
in motion to carry them through, namely, to have 

every organization in DePue participate in the cen- 
tennial; to have the 1961 A.P.B.A., National Cham- 
pionship Outboard Regatta on Lake DePue, and 
to arrange a variety of entertainment to please ev- 
eryone with special activities planned for the chil- 
dren plus a Queen Contest. 

Various means of financing the celebration 
were discussed, including the races, contests, sou- 
venirs, car raffle, and others. 

To successfully accomplish these objectives 
and meet many unexpected problems in planning 
such a gigantic event, Toovey called for expressions 
of pride and goodwill and the cooperation of every 

He expressed the committee's gratitude for all 
contributions of time, efforts, and funds. The profits 
will be donated to the village for improvements. 
A non-profit organization charter was granted the 
committee in March, 1961 by the Secretary of State. 

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Seeger, Chicago, hove ex- 
tended much valuable assistance and publicity re- 


garding the Regatta. Mr. Seeger is racing com- 
missioner of the American Power Boot Association. 
The following organizations have been repre- 
sented at the monthly planning sessions: DePue 
Boat Club, DePue Booster Club, DePue Business 
Men, DePue Fire Department, American Legion 
Post 327, and Auxiliary, Veterans of Foreign Wars 
Post 4602 and Auxiliary, Slovenian Lodge S. N. P. J 

59, American Fraternal Union 130, New Jersey Zinc 
Company, U.S. Steel Workers of America Local 
5212, Men's Fellowship and Ladies Guild of DePue 
Congregational Church, St. Anne's, Our Lady, and 
Altar Sodalities, and Holy Name Society of St. 
Mary's Catholic Church, Girl Scouts, and Boy 

In The Beginning 

Almost one hundred and thirty years ago, pion- 
eer families leaving their homes in the east, began 
to arrive, some in covered wagons, some by boat, 
and some on foot, and settled in what was then a 

They set the stage for the opening performance 
of a "show" that was destined to have a continuous 
run. Their theater was the beginning of DePue. 
It was, according to all historical reviews, an im- 
posing drama of sadness and joy, war and peace, 
gains and losses, life and death. This courageous 
"first act" was superb. 

The actors, our stalwart ancestors, were de- 
termined that no reverses, great or small, would 
bring down the curtain on their show! They all 
played major roles — there was no memorizing 
lines for theirs was a human drama, lived from 
day to day. 

In the vernacular of today's theatrical world, 
the pioneers' first act would be called a "wild west- 

The curtain has gone down for all of those early 
actors, but not before a new generation of actors 
had taken over. Some of these people are still here 
and are watching the show go on. 

If the original few in the very first act, over 
one hundred and thirty years ago, could have 
front row seats today, would they recognize it to 
be a continuation of what they institued? 

Certainly they would see that much progress 
has been made; their efforts had been productive; 
their prayers had been answered. They would be 
as proud of the new actors as we ore of them. 

Certainly they would be bewildered, but would 
marvel at the splendor of the brightly-colored neon- 
lighted show of today — for their "footlights" were 
dishes of grease with rag wicks, resinous pine 
knots, and later candles and crude oil lamps. 

They would see that the stage settings, scenery, 
costumes and properties had progressed. They 
would not comprehend nuclear power, jet planes, 
space ships, satellites, rockets and such — for they 
knew only oxen, horses, mules and water power. 

The show in the years 1861 to 1961 are in re- 
view — they are history. A new act is taking form, 
but still a continuation. It is no longer a real wes- 
tern show but an atomic spectacular. 

Who is to say, if we could have front row seats 
one hundred years from now, that we would recog- 
nize the show? We, too, will progress as will our 
descendants, for the show must go on. 

In planning and celebrating DePue's centen- 
nial, we pay special tribute to those brave, devout 
pioneers and their descendants. We honor their 
courage and revere their determination and ag- 
gressiveness. We will always reserve front row 
seats for them in the historical reviews of time. 

— • Mrs. Alice Glover Deal 

The Early Years 

In 1914, Mrs. Albert Frey, a former teacher in 
the DePue School compiled a short history of the 
village, to be given at a club meeting. But for the 
fact that she interviewed, at that time, the three 
remaining early settlers of the village, no authentic 
records would have been made of the beginning 
of the territory now known as DePue. 

From Charles L. Savage, Doras (Mrs. Edward) 
Tinley, 83 years old at that time, and Mrs. Henriet- 
ta Savage, Mrs. Frey was able to obtain an early 
record of the pioneers, the development of the vill- 
age, the start of schools and churches. It is from 
some of her story that we relate much of this chap- 

Charles Savage first settled with his parents 

in Hennepin in 1831 and came to this area in 1836. 
It is through his knowledge of pioneer days that 
we know Shabbona, the friendly Indian Chief and 
other Indians often visited in the pioneer homes. 

The old settlers recalled being able to shoot 
wild turkey or deer at any time. This vast wilder- 
ness abounded in many wild beasts and game of 
all kind. Wild hogs were plentiful along the river 
bottoms. Passenger pigeons, now almost extinct 
were so numerous that they broke down trees with 
their weight. The lake and streams abounded with 
fish; a single draw of the nets would yield tons 
of fish at a time. 

Savage was a farmer, land owner and auc- 

tioneer. He bought land before the Civil War. He 
later sold 200 acres to the Mineral Point Zinc Com- 

The three old settlers told of the great produc- 
tivity of the land in this area, but also spoke of low 
prices. Corn sold for 6 cents a bushel and wheat 
at 121/2 cents a bushel. Dressed pork v/as 75 cents 
a hundred. They told of hauling grain to Chicago 
by oxen, the trip required a month. 

There v/as a great deal of malaria in the early 
years and though the settlers were surrounded with 
abundance, they often did not have the health to 
partake of it. Other bits of the early history told 
by these old timers will be included in other parts 
of the story of DePue. 

The village was first called Newport Steamboat 
Landing, second Trenton, then Sherman, and final- 
ly DePue. In many old records and on the village 
seal the name was spelled Dupue. While known 
as Trenton, the post office was then Selby (Shelby) 
it was discovered thcrt another town of Trenton 
existed on the Mississippi River and to avoid delay 
in mail delivery, the name was changed to Sher- 

In 1835, John Hall built a large warehouse. 
Steamboats began to come to his landing and load 
with produce for delivery to towns along the Illi- 
nois and Mississippi Rivers. 

In 1836, a company was formed and land pur- 
chased from John Clark. They built two large ware- 
houses and the village became the great shipping 
point for all of the country west of the Illinois River. 
A brisk trade was carried on for many years in 
grain and livestock by farmers and business men. 

In 1853, Benjamin Newell, a pioneer business 
man, laid out the town and called it Trenton. The 
site was platted by Justin Olds, surveyor. Newell 
was recorded as the town proprietor. At one time 
he owned almost 1200 acres of land and most of 
the lake. 

In 1842, Newell purchased two warehouses and 
a pork house. He packed and shipped pork to St. 
Louis by boot. He built a grist mill and ground 
wheat into flour. He also built a cooper shop and 
made the barrels for the flour. Steamboats came 
once a week for cargoes of flour, potatoes and 

Newell built a saw mill and employed 100 wood- 
choppers to clear the land. The saw mill stood near 
the lake at the corner of what is now Union and 
Second streets. The saw mill's capacity was 115 
railroad ties per day, for shipment. In 1850, grading 
was begun in this area for the Chicago, Rock Island 
and Pacific Railroad. Ties were laid in 1851-52. 

The first trains were run as for as Rock Island in 
1854. A single track was laid. Wood used as fuel 
for the engines was sawed into logs and piled 
along the tracks from the East Crossing to the west 
edge of the village for DePue was a fueling station. 

In 1856, besides the cooper shop, warehouses, 
grist and saw mills there was one store, one black- 
smith shop, one saloon and one hotel. 

These early pioneers were law-makers too. The 
Village of Sherman was incorporated under the 
common law in 1861. The charter was obtained 
through the efforts of Mr. Stacy, representative, for 
$5.00. The village council met once a month, and 
were paid 50 cents. Liquor license was $50.00 per 

From an early record called Sherman Journal 
1866 (early pages were missing) we learned that 
they had a lengthy ordinance (6 sections) regulat- 
ing the sale of liquor; an ordinance relating to 
collection of fines, forfeitures, penalties and costs; 
an ordinance concerning nuisances and the health 
of the village; an ordinance to prevent gambling 
and other disorderly conducts in the village; an 
ordinance fixing the boundaries of the village, and 
an ordinance regulating the speed of trains through 
the village. It was set at six miles per hour. 

The village board was G. Kelums, president, G. 
Ireland, C. Savage, N. Lushinger and David Meyers. 
H. C. Hill was clerk. These ordinances were ap- 
proved and adopted June 30, 1866, drawn up by 
Ide and Kendall, attorneys, at a cost of $17.00. 

On February 18, 1867, the same village board 
adopted the following resolution to-wit: "That we, 
the village board, adopt the act entitled, "An act 
to change the name of the town of Sherman to that 
of Dupue, and to extend the corporate powers 

In June, 1869, with Edward Tinley president, 
the board ordained that the boundaries of said 
town shall include within its limits, all of section 
thirty-five (35) in township sixteen (16) north, range 
ten (10) east of the fourth (4th) principal meridian. 
It wasn't until Dec. 15, 1908 with George M. Bryant, 
president, that the seal was changed and embossed 
with the name of the village spelled "DePue". 

In 1888, a special election was held to deter- 
mine if DePue would become organized as a village 
under the act of the general assembly of the State 
of Illinois. Thirty-eight votes were cast for village 
organization under the general law. Charles Sav- 
age was the president, trustees were Charles and 
Martin Banschbach, Thomas Shaw, Barney Yocks, 
with Frank Pope, clerk. In 1901, the charter was 
granted by James A. Rose, Secretary of State. 

The German Settlers 

Mrs. Anna Yocks Lawless, 81 years old, who 
came to America with her parents, the Bernard 
Yocks, when she was a baby, has lived in DePue 
most of her life. She was one of the class of seven 
to graduate in 1896 from DePue's two-year high 
school. With her keen memory of early DePue she 
has given us this "first hand" information regarding 
the early German settlement in the Village. 

"There are a good many names of German 
origin in the early records of the village, among 
them are the following: Achinger, Bernhardt, Beyer, 
Banschbach, Croisant, Dunterman, Feltes, Goering, 
Gieler, Gusman, Hahn, Hartman, Hassler, Heitz, 
Herzog, Hoppler, Huber, Krieg, Krueger, Link, Luch- 
singer, Maikels, Meyer, Schmidt, Seeburger, Sted- 
man, Stoffel, Werner, Wuban, Wolters, and Zim- 

The last sizable emigration from Germany 
was in the late 1870's and early 1880's. Some of 
those families were: Herman Baumer, August 
Bansch, Ernest Guenther, Henry Hulsen, Fred 
Krueger, George Lemmler, Jacob Mueller, Stefan 
Nawa, Albert Stieffel, Jacob Stuecken, Julius Thron, 
Bernhardt Yocks, John Schworts, Albert Eiselman, 
Reinhardt Barthel and Martin Hedke. 

Germany had had compulsory education laws 
for years, so when the principal of the school pro- 
posed holding night classes to teach English, most 
of these men were eager to attend, as well as the 
three Baumer sons, Fritz, Herman and Gustave; 
and Clement and William Wolff, nephews of the 
Yocks and Nawas (The wives, presumably, were 
supposed to learn English from the men!) But the 
incentive for them to learn it immediately was lack- 
ing, since German was spoken by the two mer- 
chants in town — Frey and Bernhardt, and Goering 
in the mecrt market. 

Peru, only ten miles away, with two depart- 
ment stores was able to offer more merchandise 
and the clerks spoke German, too. 

In those early years, wherever groups of Ger- 
mans gathered, there was singing. Here, too, they 
were not long in organizing a "sang verein" — 
or choral society. There were good voices, led by 
Steve Nawa, conductor, giving them the pitch on 
a violin. They sang all the old and new German 
lieder. There was much sociability among the 
families in connection with this. It undoubtedly 
helped much to allay any homesickness for the 
fatherland." — Mrs. Anna Yocks Lawless 

Village Administration 1869 - 1900 

The early settlers' problems in a village just 
beginning to grow were different and difficult at 
times. Lengthy ordinances were drawn up by the 
village lawmakers on issues of liquor, gambling, 
taxes, pounds, fines and penalties, peddlers, shows, 
health, elections, poll tax, salaries, misdemeanors, 
public safety, peace and quiet, police and the town 
seal. From time to time these ordinances were 
amended and enlarged. Enforcing them was a 
different problem. 

The health of the people posed a constant prob- 
lem. Contagious diseases, especially small pox, 
spread quickly. Strict quarantine and fumigation 
laws were enforced with special police to guard 
the stricken premises; a pest house was in oper- 

There were health problems through contam- 
ination in wells, "rain barrels" and out houses. 
Decaying remains of animals and fish were more 
unhealthy problems to be met. Rabies was feared 
because all animals, horses, cows, swine, goats 
and such ran at large in the settlement. 

All of that led to the building of a village pound 
in 1870. It was 8 x 14 x 7; constructed of wire. Pound 
masters were appointed at annual elections. Ani- 
mals were impounded, fed and confined for a per- 
iod of time and if not claimed they were sold crt 
auction. George Hoppler, Sr., built the first pound 
for $7.00. 

E. Tinley, president, H. C. Hill, George Hosier, 
Sam Heitz and D. McCarthy were some of the law- 
makers in this period. They instituted the poll tax. 

of 2 days labor on the streets or $2.00 cash. They 
levied a tax of 15 cents on $100.00 valuation of real 
and personal properties for road and bridge pur- 
poses. They set the liquor license at $40,00 per 
year but in 1875 raised it to $100.00. 

Building roads and bridges and keeping them 
in repair were early problems. The creek that 
crosses the "Cornfield" division of the village would 
flood during heavy storms and wash out roads 
and bridges. It still causes some damage at times. 
Laborers were paid $1.00 per day and the road 
commissioner was paid $1.75 per day. 

A treasurer's report at the end of the fiscal year 
of 1877 showed receipts $389.26, disbursements 
$400.35 — in debt $11.09. Population of the village 
then was nearly 300 people. The board members 
were J. Hassler, B. Litchfield, C. Savage, Jacob Lu- 
singer, A. Dunterman. Justus Pope, clerk. 

As the years passed, wooden sidewalks were 
built when the village finances permitted. Labor 
was donated by the citizens being so benefitted. 
Heretofore the streets were cinder and gravel paths. 

In 1878 George Hoppler built the first calaboose 
for the village. It was 12 x 20 x 9 — at a cost of 
$245.00. Violators could now be lodged in it instead 
of in the Princeton jail. 

In 1881 a larger pound was built, liquor licens- 
es were raised to $140.00, pack peddlers paid $1.00 
a day license. 

In 1885 the liquor license was increased to 
$500.00 a year, the poll tax was dropped, new 

Charles Savage, Board Member 

board members were C. Banchbach, J. McKinstry 
and T. Show. George Beyer was village marshal, 
at a salary of $25.00 per month. 

In 1889 fifteen keorsene lights were erected. 
Lamplighters were appointed each year. Some 
of the early ones were B. Yocks, G. Beyer and B. 

In 1891 the ordinance regulating the speed of 
trains in the village was changed to read — "from 
6 miles to 10 miles per hour." Louis Monnett was a 
new board member. W. Giesey was clerk. Wells 
were being dug in the village for fire fighting and 
village use. 

In 1892 George Beyer was appointed captain 
to organize a fire company. A fire engine costing 
$775 was purchased from the Howe Pump and 
Engine Co., of Indianapolis. Volunteer Fire Com- 
pany No. 1 was organized with Beyer, chief, W. 
Sweeley, assistant chief and Simon Huber, second 
assistant. The board empowered the chief to en- 
force the labor of any citizen at the fire engine 
during a fire. The pump on the fire engine was 
a "teeter-totter" principal and men worked the 

A lengthy fire ordinance was drawn up. It 
was agreed that the first man arriving at the fire 
house with a team to haul the engine would be 

paid $3.00. Jacob Lusinger was engineer. They 
had 50 pails, 4 ladders and 4 grappling hooks as 
extra equipment. The church bell sounded the fire 

In the years 1892-1895 new lawmakers includ- 
ed F. Baumer, R. Paden, W. Sullivan, J. Croisant, 
J. Feltes, C. Stedman with Albert Frey as clerk at 
a salary of $50.00 per year. More street lights were 
erected. In 1896 F. Powers was mayor. Roads were 
built and more sidewalks constructed. 

In 1898 telephone companies were bidding for 
the right to enter the village and the council grant- 
ed such to the Central Union Telephone Co., to 
place and maintain poles and necessary equip- 
ment for supplying public communication by tele- 

In 1898 the council accepted the J. V/hite and 
Company plan for a village water works system. 
They issued village warrants of the amount of 
$3,000.00 for 6 years at 6 percent for payment of 
the system. 

In 1899 the first payment of $500.00 was made 
on the water works. So started the village water 
system. Dr. Rummell vaccinated the children of the 
village at a cost of $39.00. 

The treasurer's report at the end of that period 
showed a balance on hand of $757.29. 

The Years 1900 - 1930 

These were the years of expansion. Members 
of the second generation were beginning to take 
over the village administration. Telephone and 
electric light companies were given permission to 
enter the village and "set-up." There were many 
lengthy ordinances drawn to cover and regulate 
all new progresses. There were constant amend- 
ments of past ordinances made to meet the needs 
of improvements. 

The big, big boom commenced in 1904, when 
the Mineral Point Zinc Co. purchased land and 
began to build their plant. The population was 
about 500, and during the period 1900 to 1930, the 
population reached 2,300. 

Naturally many homes had to be constructed, 
new streets had to be opened and graveled. The 
Plant built "company houses" in the Park Addition, 
White City and Smoky Hollow. There were annex- 
ations of many subdivisions owned by Keims, 
Smiths, Banschbachs, Freys, Padens, Sorchychs and 

In 1905, George Beyer asked for and was given 
a franchise to operate an electric light system in 
the village. Kerosene lights were in use, but many 
business houses and "well-to-do" homes had gas 
lights. Individual carbide tanks were used with the 
same principal as coal miners' pit lamps. 

"The DePue Journal" newspaper, published by 
Ralph Hunt, was the official newspaper. 

In 1906, the Illinois Valley Railway (Interurban) 
was granted permission to lay down a railway 
through the Village. The town board organized a 
Board of Local Improvements and named Simon 
Huber and George Glover to serve on it. Many 
concrete sidewalks were constructed. Watts A. 
Johnson, Princeton, was the village attorney. 

In 1907, George M. Bryant was the mayor, 
Harry F. Ream, treasurer, Lloyd Hurless, Clerk, Til 
Winkler, night police, Jim Frost, marshal and Frank 
Michalski was police in Keim's Addition to guard 
homes under construction. 

In 1908, the village council issued 10 bonds 
of $500 each to finance the construction of a new 
village hall. Donald Glassey, DePue, built the hail 
for $4,885.90. Frank Powers, W. Heitz and Gus 
Baumer were new trustees, Charles Pope, the clerk. 

In 1909, the village paid the first payment of 
$500, on the electric light system to the Lux Light 

In 1910, a gasoline fire engine with four cylin- 
ders was purchased at a cost of $1,425.00. The 
board also purchased 500 feet of fire hose, costing 
$237.00. A make-shift library was carried on in the 
village hall. There were 15 saloons and liquor li- 
censes were $500 per year. 

In this year, too, the law-makers appropriated 
$8,000 for a water works system. Water mains were 
laid. Wils Rice was the main plumber. A street 
was opened and widened, now known as East 
Fourth Street, financed by general taxation. 

In 1911, Ernest Guenther was president of the 
board, Herman Bansch, Jacob Feurer and Harry 

Dernbach were trustees. An artesian well was 
drilled. The board appropriated $400 for lights, 
$400 for police, $600 for salaries and $1500 for street 
and alley work. Dr. Rummell had 50 quarantine 
signs printed in Spanish, Polish, and Austrian. Wa- 
ter rates were set at $1 per quarter for 15,000 gal- 
lons; sprinkler wagons paid $3 per quarter. 

In 1912 and 1913, Ernest Guenther was presi- 
dent; John Goering, Hiram Giesey and Edwin 
Dinwiddle were trustees. Lengthy water works 
ordinances were drawn up. The board issued 15 
water works bonds to finance the $8,000 water 
works system. 

The board also appropriated for corporate use 
for the year $32,725.00, proof that the village was 
rapidly expanding and improving. Of that amount 
$6,000 was for streets and alleys, $4,000 for water 
mains; $4,500 for construction of a building over 
the artesian well; $3,500 motor, pump and equip- 
ment; and $5,000 for the construction of a water 

In 1915-16, George M. Bryant was president, 
Chris Blindt, Ben Floyd, Charles Pierce were the 
new board members. Water mains were laid in 
Keim's, Smith's and the East Bluff Additions. Land 
was purchased from Mary and Charles Banschbach 
bordering on Lake DePue for a public park. They 
issued $10,000 in Public Park Bonds. Electric lights 
were put in homes in the Hollow Addition. 

In 1917, Frank Fowler was president, David 
Keim, John Feurer and Elmo Walker trustees, 
George Glover, night police, Herman Bansch, mar- 
shal. Streets were oiled. Automobiles were here 
to stay and traffic ordinances were drawn up. 

In 1918, John Rice and Chris Gieler were new 
board members and Joe Herzog night police. Water 
rent collected for three months in the village was 
$548.19. Charles Pope, clerk, was also wcrter super- 
intendent. The land acquired for the DePue ceme- 
tery was surveyed and plotted; 16 special police 
were appointed to serve the Mineral Point Zinc 
Plant. The well on the East Bluff was completed 
by the Plant and ordinances drawn up concerning 

In 1919, L. G. Duncan was mayor, Jas. Brennan, 
Frank Cantwell and Fred Krueger were trustees. 
Martin Kendzierski was marshal, but resigned later 
and moved away. Many homes were built, more 
streets opened and graveled, electric light system 

In 1920, L. G. Duncan was reelected but later 
resigned to move away. His term was finished by 
Fred Krueger. J. Graham, J. P. Helmer and Walter 
Richardson were trustees. Harry Ream continued 
to serve as the village treasurer. Village was to be 
surveyed for a sewer system. 

In 1921, Frank Fowler was mayor; David Keim, 
Chris Johnson and Guy Jensen, trustees. They ap- 
propriated $15,000 to use in extending and improv- 
ing fire and water system. Water works bonds 
were issued. A 150,000 gallon tank to be built in 
the next year. 

In 1922-23, F. Fowler was president with J. 
Graham, J. Helmer, G. Jensen, W. Richardson, D. 
Keim, C. Johnson trustees. August Bansch was 
janitor. They appropriated $14,812.50 for corporate 
uses, $6,000 being marked for street improvement. 
They appointed Moses Hazlett, Henry Heyer, Mar- 
tin Brennan, Al Lawrence, and John Mourer special 
police for the zinc plant. Dr. W. Scanlon, 1922, Dr. 
J. Lewis, 1923, headed the board of health. In 1923, 
Miss Elizabeth McPheeters (Mrs. T. E. Sullivan) re- 
placed the late Mrs. Andrew Beckley on the board 
of health. 

In 1924, there was an outbreak of typhoid fever. 
Outhouses and flies were mainly responsible for it. 
The sale of ice from the lake was prohibited. Plans 
were started at once for a complete sewer system 
in the village to cost $61,500. Ordinances were 
drawn up concerning it. Motor vehicle tax of $5 
per car was levied. The village purchased a 10,000 
gallon tank of road oil. They also purchased a new 
International fire truck for $4,700. Frank Cantwell 
was fire chief. 

In 1925, Harvey Seeley was mayor, Guy Jen- 
sen, Ernst Hasse, L. A. Buffinger were trustees. A 

sewer system contract was granted to Paul De 
Paola, later taken over by L. A. Mullins. 

In 1926, more lengthy ordinances governing 
the sewer system were drown up Joe Herzog was 
named superintendent of sewers. In that year, too, 
the board drew up an ordinance permitting the 
paving of the roadway of a portion of East, Fourth, 
and Depot streets. 

In 1927, and 1928, Harvey Seeley was mayor, 
Guy Jensen, Eli Edwards, Ernest Hasse and Ignatz 
Widmar were trustees. A band tax of one-half mill 
on the dollar was levied for the village band. State 
gas tax went into effect. Repairs were made to the 

In 1929, Harvey Seeley was president. Not 
much interest was shown in the village election 
as only 47 votes were cast. The village clerk's sal- 
ary was fixed at $75 per month; marshal's salai^/ 
$150. Teamsters were paid 90 cents per hour, truck- 
ers $1.00, and day laborers, 50 cents per hour. 

In 1930, there was competition for village clerk; 
634 votes cast. Charles Pope received 455 and 
Harry Helmer 176 votes. Lloyd Hurless resigned 
as police magistrate and James Meagher was elect- 
ed to fill that office. 

Administration Years 1930 to 1961 

The first half of this era were years of depres- 
sion and World War II. In 1929 the stock market 
crashed, business collapsed, banks closed and un- 
employment spread, and the result was the world 
wide depression that lasted five years. The Illinois 
Emergency Relief Commission aided needy com- 
munities, DePue included. 

In the years 1929 to 1940, through federal 
W.P.A. aid, DePue carried on a comprehensive pro- 
gram of public improvement. One of the outstand- 
ing improvements was the construction of a sewage 
and disposal plant at a cost of $60,000 financed 
through special assessments. DePue received a 
state commendation, being one of the few commun- 
ities along the Illinois River to install a system meet- 
ing health requirements. 

Other projects included a paved street through 
the main business district to the west entrance of 
the village; the boulevard lighting system was in- 
stalled, two four-inch water mains were laid; a bit- 
uminous road surface was laid on the road to White 
City; the athletic field was made; sidewalk im- 
provements were carried out; a walk way was con- 
structed on the East Bluff bridge; well No. I was 
recased and a new eight-inch well sunk. 

In 1948-51, with federal W.P.A. aid and special 
assessment bonds, curbs and gutters were construct- 
ed throughout the village, costing $12,000. In 1948 
the first coat of black-top was applied to all arter- 
idl streets and in 1949 the second coat was applied 
at a total cost of approximately $35,000, financed 
through the Motor Fuel tax fund. 

The lawmakers drew up new ordinances to 
cover the projects, amended others and in 1933 

again passed the ordinance prohibiting the sale 
of malt and vinous beverages. 

Harvey Seeley was mayor from 1930 to 1939. 
Trustees serving in this period were Guy Jensen, 
Ernest Hasse, J. V/. Heylmun, J. Gurnett, G. Dwyer, 
Mark VanCleave, John Yuvan, W. Richardson and 
I. Widmar. Harry Helmer became clerk in 1934. 

Ernest Hasse was mayor from 1937 to 1943. 
Trustees with him in 1937 were G. Dwyer, M. Van- 
Cleave, J. Yuvan, J. Gurnett, J. P. Helmer and J. 
Turner. Raymond Rauh was appointed clerk to fill 
the vacancy caused by the death of Harry Helmer. 
Harry Ream, Village Treasurer, died in 1942 and 
C. W. Herzog was appointed to fill the vacancy. 

J. P. Helmer was mayor from 1945 to 1949. Stan- 
ley Piascyk was village clerk. Trustees with Helmer 
were L. Reinsch, John Slatner Jr., V. Suarez, and 
Gurnett who later resigned. Alma McLaughlin 
filled the vacancy. In 1947, F. Hoffert, T. Glover 
and F. Siska were elected. Robert Croissant wod 
appointed marshal. Herman Bansch, DePue's be- 
loved policeman for twenty-five years, died in 1946. 

A Village Park Commission was created v/ith 
F. Mickel, W. Glover, T. B. Blanco, N. K. Banks and 
H. Marple as members. The American Legion, Post 
327, named the new park "Memorial Park" in honor 
of World Wars I and II veterans. 

In 1949 Matt Fassino was elected mayor and 
served until 1961. The board consisted of L. Mcn- 
liere, J. Marple, V. Suarez, F. Hoffert, F. Siska and 
T. Glover as trustees, and S. Piascyk as clerk. G. 
Bryant was night policeman. Marliere resigned 
and Harry Haupt was named to fill the vacancy. 

The same board served in 1950. Erven Floyd 

was appointed marshal and George Bryant night 
policeman. The East Bluff park playgrounds were 
created. In 1951 the board was changed to include 
Charles Meadowcroft, who replaced Glover. In 
1952 John Heck replaced Haupt. G Bryant resigned 
and G. Glover was appointed as night policeman. 
Clerk Piascyk resigned to become postmaster and 
E. Kwit was appointed clerk. 

In 1953-54 the board was Hoffert, Heck, Siska, 
Suarez, R. Stein and C. Meadowcroft. In 1955-56-57, 
it was Stein, Heck, Siska, Meadowcroft, Suarez 
and W. Dolenga. 

In 1959-60, W. Dolenga, J. Heck, E. Grilc, R. 
Stein, V. Suarez and C. Meadowcroft served as 
trustees. Kwit resigned as clerk and Homer Gra- 
ham replaced him. 

During Mayor Fassino's administration, curbs 
and gutters were constructed and roads black- 

topped in the White City area; an extensive side- 
walk improvement program was carried out; a new 
garbage truck was purchased; improvements made 
on the ball park; a turbine pump was installed on 
Well II; a new pump installed in the Water Works 
Building and a jet pump installed in Well I. 

Fourth Street was black-topped; a black topped 
parking area on "Main Street" was completed in 
1956, and a new $13,000 fire truck was purchased 
at the close of his term and appropriations made 
for the construction of a new fire house north of 
the railroad right of way. 

In 1961 Donald Bosnick was elected mayor. 
He is the son of Paul and Marie Bosnick, DePue 
business people since the early 1900's. The board 
elected includes: Trustees Manuel Salcedo, E. Grilc, 
Louis Machek, V. Suarez, C. Meadowcroft and W. 
Dolenga with Homer Graham serving as clerk. 

— Mrs. Alice Deal 

Sixty Years of DePue's Families 

When I was given the privilege of writing 
about our first families in DePue, it seemed as if 
it would be an easy task since name after name 
went through my mind. I was around my father's 
store from the time I could first walk and the people 
who came and went there were so clear to me. 

But when I tried to obtain dates of their birth; 
when they came to America; when they came to 
DePue, who they married, I hit snag after snag. 
In many cases, not even surviving members of these 
families knew the vital facts. To the Bureau County 
Republican of June 10, 1902, I owe my thanks for 
much of the material I gleaned. It was this date that 
made me decide to make the biographies include 
from 1840 to 1900, just before the Zinc Plant came 
to DePue. 

Many thanks to Reverend Ruesser, who so gen- 
erously allowed me to use the records of the Evan- 
gelical and Reformed Church of Hollowayville. 

There were many families associated with the 
Village: Rauhs, Dounterman, Hassler, Links, Jacob 
and Martin Frey, and Herzogs who lived on farms 
near DePue, and the families who lived on the 
Ridge. The first voting place of DePue was on the 
Ridge and so the history is interlaced. 

To "Bureau County, Past and Present" I am 
indebted also, for histories. 

There is much I should like to have included 
as many of these early people were great indi- 
viduals, but I had to stop somewhere due to the 
size of the finished book planned on. 

The town council proceedings from 1867 to 
1900, were also a source of information. 

It was not only a privilege but a joy to live 
DePue again through the history of these first fam- 
ilies of DePue and surrounding country. 

— Kathryn Frey Godfrey 
Bansch, August, Sr. 

August Bansch, Sr. came from Germany in 
1884, and followed mining. His wife was Theresa 
Stiefel, daughter of Albert Stiefel. The only one 
of their children still living in DePue, is August, Jr. 

who was born in Germany in 1878, and came to 
DePue when a young boy. He is married to Ther- 
esa Guenther Croisant (widow of Charles Croisant). 

Banschbach, Martin 

Martin Banschbach was born Aug., 1833 at 
Oberschefflens, Germany. He came to DePue in 
1854. The house he lived in (built by B. Newell) 
is still occupied by two of his daughters, Elizabeth 
and Lillian. One of his farms, now known as "The 
Cornfield" and the other one "The Orchard" (Tin- 
ley Ave.) were developed by Mrs. Banschbach for 
building sites after the Zinc Plant came here. The 
home was partly a tavern, and once there were 
30 Union soldiers stayed overnight enroute to the 
South. It was at the Banschbach house choir prac- 
tice was conducted by the leader, Edward Tinley, 
every week. Mr. Banschbach was married to Anna 
Marie Redlingschofer. 

Gus Baumer, 93, one of DePue's Oldest 
Citizens and Daughter, Marie Baumer. 

Baumer, Gustav 

Gustov "Bismarck" Baumer came to DePue 
from Germany in 1884, with his father and seven 
brothers and sisters. His wife was Mable Dunter- 
man, daughter of Ben Newell Dunterman. The tract 
of land now know as the Park Addition, was owned 
by the Baumer family. Mr. Baumer served as a 
fireman, and on the town council of DePue. His 
daughter, Marie, who makes her home with her 
father, is the only member of the Baumer family 
still living in DePue. Victor Muzzarelli lives in the 
old family home. 

Bernhardt, Jacob 

Jacob Bernhardt was born in 1832, at Freilaus- 
heim, Germany, and came to DePue in 1853. He 
was married to Rosina Frey, daughter of Bernhard 
Prey. His home, associated in the minds of old 
timers was "The Green House" which stood where 
the Torri Garage now is. He ran a store with John 
M. Orthel, who served as village clerk in 1874. The 
store stood where the Bosnich Tavern is. 

He also had a large warehouse, where farmers 
brought grain to be shipped out by boat. The foun- 
dation stones of this building which burned to the 
ground, can still be seen, and people sitting on 
them to watch Labor Day races little realize what 
an important building they supported. 

The entire family moved to Nebraska in 1887 
where he was president of the bank at Hastings. 
He served on the town council many times, and 
was treasurer in 1867. He and his wife are buried 
in the Hollawayville Cemetery. 

Bernhardt, Philip 

Philip Bernhardt, a brother of Jacob, was born 
1829. He never married and after the Jacob Bern- 
hardts moved to Nebraska, he made his home with 
the Robert D. Padens. He served as president of 
the town board in 1879. 

Beyer, George 

George Beyer was born in Peru, Illinois, in 
1859, and came to DePue in 1878. His principal 
business was the grain elevator which was later 
bought by George M. Bryant. His wife was Johan- 
nah Hopper, of Bureau. In the early 1900s he lived 
for awhile in Decatur, 111. He was secretary of the 
Illinois Grain Dealers in 1903, and sales manager 
of McLeod Automatic Grain Scale Co., of Pa., at the 
time of his death. Mrs. James Meagher, a daughter, 
is the only member of his family still living here. 


The name of Brockhaus was well known in the 
early days here. A daughter, Maude was married 
to William Smith, Jr., a son of W. B. Smith. He was 
very active in the Congregational Church work. 


Like many of the families who once lived here, 
the Caughey family is no longer here. A daughter 
Lilly was married to Charles Hoppler. There were 
two brothers, John and Sam, and their home was 
the present home of Ira Searl. 

G. M. Clarke 

G. M. (Matt) Clarke was born on a farm near 
Van Grin, 111., in 1851, and was married to Laura 
Ann Bryant, who also was born near there. They 
came to DePue in 1899, and lived where AUie Dilts 
now lives. Their daughter, Mrs. Clyde Rhyne 
(Mayme) and son Leonard Clarke still live here. 

Joseph H. Croisant 

Joseph H. Croisant was born in Munich, Germany, 
in 1845, and came to Selby Township in 1847. He 
worked in the mines and served the town as police 
magistrate. He was deputy sheriff for two years. 
He was the father of Charles, Henry, Philip, Kate 
and Minnie. His home was where Paul Van Cleave 
now lives. 

W. B. Curry 

W. B. Curry was born at Woodhull, in 1871, 
and came to DePue in 1895. His barber shop stood 
where Morse Bryant's store is now. He was married 
to Minnie Feltes, and they lived in a house next 
to Piascyk's home, known as the Winkler house. 
There were no children. 

George Beyer, Businessman and 
Town Marshal in 1 885 

Harry Dart 
Harry Dart was born at Wyanet, and came to 
DePue in 1894, after learning telegraphy. He had 
charge of the Three I and Rock Island railway busi- 
ness. He married Amelia Heitz, daughter of Sam 
Heitz, and their first home stood next to the Philip 
66 Oil Station. 

B. F. Ellis 

B. F. Ellis came to DePue after serving in the 
Civil War. His children were George, Lee, Ida, Ella, 
and Frances. He worked on the railroad and as 
school janitor. Ella and Frances survive. DePue 
descendants are members of the George Ellis fam- 
ily, John, Leslie, Bill, and Mary; Ruth, Marvin, Lucy, 
and the Rev. Percy Ellis live elsewhere. George 
married Lou Belle Giesey, now 78 years old. 

F. A. Fowler 

Frank Fowler was born at Henry in 1877. He 
moved to DePue in 1885, where he conducted a fish 
business with his father, J. B. Fowler. Kis wife was 
Ada Harrison, daughter of William Harrison. He 
served on the Village Board in 1904, and was later 
mayor. Mrs. Adolph Ristau is the only member of 
the family living in DePue. 

John B. Feltes 

John B. Feltes came from Hennepin, and ran 
the store that had been run by Bernhard and Orthel. 
He later ran a grocery store across from Muzzarel- 
li's and after selling out, went to work for Frey 
Brothers. After many years of bachelorhood he 
married Charity Dunterman, an aunt of Ben and 
Selby Dunterman. Their home was the farm re- 
cently sold by "Bismarck" Baumer. 

John Frey 

John Frey, son of Bernhard Frey, was born at 
Oberschefflens, Germany, Sept., 1883, and after a 
short time in Philadelphia, came with his family 
to DePue in 1855. He was the village shoemaker 
and his store stood on the present site of Lisetta 
Prey's home. He married Christine Franks from 
Chicago. He served in the Civil War from DePue 
and v/as v\^ith General Sherman on his march from 
Atlanta to the sea. He served as president of the 
Village Board in 1867. The Huber family and the 
Banschbachs came from the same town in Ger- 
many. The only member of the Frey family still 
in DePue is Mrs. Harold Godfrey, daughter of 
Frank Frey. 

Frank Frey 

Frey, Frank 

Frank Frey, the oldest son of John Frey was born 
in DePue in 1865. He finished business college at 
Bryant & Stratton's in Detroit, and was a bookkeep- 
er for Brunswick-Balke-Collendar Co. there. He re- 
turned to DePue in 1886 and started a general mer- 
chandise store with his brother Albert. 

This was where the recreation center now is. 

He served as agent for the M.P.Z. Co. in the pur- 
chase of the land where their plant now stands. 
He was postmaster for 8 years, president of the 
DePue State Bank, and was pay master at the Zinc 

In 1917, he sold out the store business which 
had expanded to include the building now oc- 
cupied by the bowling alley, to Guy Jensen, and 
went as general manager of a wholesale grocery 
firm in Peoria. He was seated in his office there 
when he died of a heart attack in 1923. His wife 
was Emily Griffith of What Cheer, Iowa, and their 
home was the present home of Mrs. Mary Dobrich. 

Frey, Albert 

Albert Frey was the second son of John Frey, born 
in 1867, and married Grace Hurless, daughter of 
Rev. Parker Hurless. He was in business with his 
brother, Frank for many years but due to poor 
health sold out to Frank in 1910. He was county 
supervisor from Selby Township for many years. 
His home was the present home of Warren Crois- 

Frey, Martin 
Martin Frey was the youngest son of John Frey 
and made his home with the only sister, Lisetta 
Frey. When he was 8 years old he developed os- 
teomyelitis and finally amputation of a leg was 
necessary. In spite of his handicap he helped out 
in the Frey Store and later Anderson's, and was 
a member of the DePue Band. He never married. 

Geiler, Peter C. 

Peter C. Geiler ran a blacksmith shop where 
the playground east of the gymnasium now is. He 
was a native of Denmark. His sons, Christ and 
Henry lived here for many years, and a daughter, 
Sophie was married to a Mr. Hammond, and died 
at an early age. 

Gethold, Louis 

Louis Gethold's name appears in the records 
of the town council meetings but little is known of 
him. He came here from Canada, and was a ne- 
phew of Mrs. Eli Metevia. 

Gewelke, Charles 

Charles Gewelke came to this country from 
Germany when a mere lad. He was married to 
Minnie Caroline Gewelke. Their home stood behind 
the house now occupied by their daughter, Mrs. 
Emma Peters, and son Fritz Gewelke. 


The Giesey home was at the top of the old 
Giesey hill. Later they moved to the village. Wil- 
liam was a clerk for the Lemp Brewing Co. and 
never married. He served on the town board. John 
lived in a house across the street from the Barto 
Funeral Home, and is the father of Mrs. George 
Ellis, Mrs. Giesey was Lucy Fox, a cousin of Moses 

Gurnett, John, Sr. 

One of the early settlers in what is now DePue 

was John Gurnett, Sr. Mrs. Gurnett was Bridget 

Curran and both she and her husband were born 

in Ireland. Their home was where the Jesse Sad- 


nicks now live. Of the eight children born to them, 
John, Jr. (Jack) is the only one who lives here now. 
Jack Gurnett was born here in 1877 and is married 
to Lottie Smith, a daughter of Paul Smith. He was 
employed for years in the office of the Zinc Co. 

Glover, George 

George Glover was born near Princeton, but 
when a small boy, moved to Seatonville. In 1898, 
he had charge of the Coal Company's meat mar- 
ket at Marquette. Later he had his own market 
at DePue. He was married in 1898 to Barbara Zim- 
merman, daughter of Henry Zimmerman. His chil- 
dren still living here are Glen, Thomas, Nola and 

Goering, George Jacob Sr. 

George Jacob Goering Sr. was born in Ger- 
many, in 1821, and came to the United States in 
1864. His son, George, Jr., was born in 1852 and 
was married to Julia Hartig. Their farm home stood 
east of Laicoff's store. A slaughter house for their 
meat market in the village was quite a bit farther 

His son was John H. Goering, who was asso- 
ciated with Beyer & Co. and later Mr. Feltes sold 
his store to Mr. Goering. Later he ran the saloon 
run by J. B. Fowler, where the Zinc Co. Club House 
now stands. His first wife was Mayme Beyer, 
daughter of George Beyer. After her death he mar- 
ried Sophia Kendzierski. He was connected with 
the C. R. I. & P. Ry., for quite a few years and later 
went into the real estate business which he con- 
ducted in LaSalle until his death. 

Goering, George 

George Goering was a brother of John Goering, 
and for many years ran the meat market where 
the shoe repair shop now is. He was married to 
Elizabeth McKinstry, a sister of Robert McKinstry. 
She was born in DePue in 1877. Their home was 
moved to its present site, the Congregational 
church parsonage. Mrs. William Krueger, a daugh- 
ter, still resides here. 

Guenther, Ernest 

Ernest Guenther, a native of Germany was 
married in Germany to Kathryn Boos, and came 
to the United States in 1880, and to DePue in 1882. 
In 1893, he purchased the store and building of 
Edward Tinley, where Steele and Bryant now hold 
forth. He was a town clerk of Selby Township. Of 
his eight children, Mrs. August Bansch, widow of 
Charles Croisant, is the only one still living here. 
After selling out his store, the family home was 
established where Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Salavanski 
now live. 

Hahn, Fred 

Fred Hahn's family, like so many former vil- 
lagers cannot be traced. It is known the saloon 
that stood across from the Club House was run by 
him. for many years. Their home was where Mr. 
and Mrs. Glenn Glover now live. He was married 
to a sister of Mrs. Stuber, Lindenmeyer by name, 
coming to Peru from Germany, where he was born 
in 1846. 

Harrison, William 

William Harrison was born in Derbyshire, 

England, and came to the U.S. in 1882. He owned 
the Adam Grieg farm only one year when he sold 
to the Zinc Co. doubling his money. Later they 
moved to Missouri. Mrs. Clara Talbot, a daughter, 
still lives in DePue. 

Heitz, Sam 

Sam Heitz came from Germany. His wife was 
Barbara, a sister of Theobold Heitz, who came to 
the U.S. in 1847, and resided on a 300 acre farm 
in Selby Township. He served as Village Clerk 
in 1867, and later was police magistrate. Their 
home was across from the drug store in early days. 
Harry and Ed Heitz, grandsons, are the only mem- 
bers of his family living in DePue today. 

Helmer, John 

John Helmer was born in 1840, and was a Civil 
War veteran from the State of Ohio. His first wife 
was Hattie Barton. His second wife was Ida May 
Vose. J. P. "Pod" Helmer, Mrs. Arthur Reistad, 
and Mrs. Irva Holstrom are the children of this sec- 
ond marriage. 

He served DePue as constable. Their son, Sid- 
ney Helmer, born in 1870, married Alfaretta Helmer, 
daughter of Arthur Walker. Mrs. Helmer was born 
at Manlius in 1877, and came to DePue when a 
little girl. She and her daughter, Odessa, still live 
in DePue. In the early 1900's there was a mine 
sunk near Princeton, and Mr. Helmer won the prize 
for naming it "Push and Go." 

Hoppler, George 

George Hoppler was born at Byron, Germany, 
in 1846, the son of John and Barbara Hoppler who 
came to the U.S. in 1848 from Germany. He en- 
listed for service in the Civil War when 17 years 
of age. At the close of the war he went to St. Louis, 
finally came back to Princeton, and then DePue 
where he ran a boarding house for six years. He 
returned to the farm and remained there. His wife 
was Philopena Werner. Mrs. Glen Sticken, a grand- 
daughter, lives in DePue. 

Hoppler, George Sr. 

George Hoppler Sr. was born in Germany in 
1834. He was married to Phillipena Croisant, born 
in 1834, and lived in a house that stood across 
from the DePue State Bank. Many of the houses, 
and the calaboose which stood across from the 
City Hall, were built by him. Kenneth Monnett, son 
of Elvina Hoppler Monnett, still lives here. 

Hoflert, Nicholas 

Nicholas Hoffert was born in Alsace-Lorraine, 
Germany, in 1863 and came to America in 1882, 
and to DePue in 1895. He was married to Katherine 
Stuber, a member of a pioneer Bureau Co. family, 
born in 1871. Fred, Nicholas, Jr, and Roy, sons, 
live in DePue. 

Hosier, George 

George Hosier came here from Indiana before 
the Civil War. His wife was Elizabeth Dogget. He 
was a Civil War veteran and served on the town 
board. His daughter, Melissa Jane, was married 
to Benjamin Newell Dunterman. 


Huber, Ulrich, Sr. 

Ulrich Huber, Sr., a carpenter by trade, came 
to DePue from Germany in the early 1850s and 
was employed in laying tracks for the C. R. I. & P. 
Railroad. He married Barbara Wentler, and they 
were the parents of Ulrich Jr., Johanna (Mrs. Paul 
J. Smith) Simon and Henry Huber. Their eldest son 
Ulrich, Jr., was born in 1858 and resided in DePue 
until his death in 1948. At the age of five he was 
stricken with scarlet fever and blinded. He was a 
familiar figure about town for many years, and 
undoubtedly had the distinction of being the citi- 
zen with the longest residence in DePue. 

He was away from DePue only during the time 
he attended the Illinois State School for the Blind 
at Jacksonville, 111., where he learned Braille. Jo- 
hanna was married to Paul Smith. Simon and 
Henry never married. Simon was active in early 
community activities. 

Hulsen, Charles 

Charles Hulsen came to DePue from Germany 
when seven years of age. He worked at the coal 
mine and was city clerk at one time. He was mar- 
ried in 1900 to Ella Flick. 

Hurless, Lloyd 

Lloyd Hurless was born at Savanna, 111., 1875 
and came to DePue in 1889. He was married to Ella 
Brant of Pike County. From 1893 to 1899 he lived 
at Summer Hill, and then returned to DePue. He 
served the town as city clerk, alderman, police 
magistrate and worked in the post office. He makes 
his home with his daughter, Mrs. Grace Jackson. 

Jackson, S. W. 

The name of S. W. Jackson appears in village 
records in 1867. He was proprietor of a store. His 
son, Summerfield, married Emma Hosier, daughter 
of George Hosier. 


The Kellog family lived in the home where 
Angel Suarez now lives. Mrs. Kellogg did the vill- 
age sewing. A son, Ollie, was drowned in the river 
at Cairo, 111. A daughter, Rene (Mrs. Wm. Goering) 
taught in the school here. Her daughter, Mrs. Jo- 
seph Carey still lives in Seatonville. 

Keim, Oliver 

Oliver Keim was born in 1860, and came to 
this area from Summerset County, Pa., in the late 
1880s. He worked as a farm hand on the Mason 
farm. He married Martha Mason and lived in Mar- 
quette where he operated a saw mill producing 
props for the mine. The family moved to DePue 
in 1900. Mr. Keim became a landowner, farmer 
and timberman. The Keim home was always open 
for any church activities. Mrs. Delia Walsh, a 
daughter, and her family live in DePue. A son, the 
late David Keim, served on the town board in 
1917, 1921 and 1923. 

Krieg, Adam 

Adam Krieg was born in Germany and came 
to DePue about 1850. He owned the farm where 
the east end of the Plant is now. It was on a visit 
to Mrs. Krieg that Christine Franks met John Frey 
whom she later married. 

Krueger, Fred 

Fred Krueger was born in Germany in 1856, 
and came to DePue in 1882. He became section 
foreman for the railroad in 1885 and was with the 
Rock Island until he retired. He married Amelia 
Schwank, and their children, Mrs. Martin Toovey 
(Emma) Fred, Jr., and William still reside here. 

Lamb, George 

George Lamb was born in 1880 at Leaven- 
worth, Kansas and came to DePue in 1898. His 
wife was Catherine Cahill of Sheffield. Mrs. Ernest 
Marliere (Viola) is the only one of the children 
still living here. 

Litchfield, Bartholemew 

Bartholemew Litchfield was born in England. 
In 1871, 1872, and 1874, he served as village trustee 
and in 1891 was village lamp lighter. He served 
faithfully the Congregational church for many 
years. A daughter, Edna, was Mrs. Ray Gore. Mrs. 
Cecil Crocker was another. Their home stood south 
of the present Donald Bosnich home. 

Lusinger, Andrew 

Andrew Lusinger was born in 1842 in Switzer- 
land and came with his parents to Rensselaer 
County, New York. At the breaking out of the Civil 
War he was living in Wisconsin and joined the 
infantry there. After the war, he ran a meat mar- 
ket on the corner of Lake and Second streets, in 
DePue. His wife was Carrie Nisley. 

Lusinger, Jacob 

Jacob Lusinger was born at Glarus, Switzer- 
land in 1844. He came with his parents to the 
United States in 1851 to Troy, N.Y. In 1857, the fam- 
ily moved to LaSalle, in 1858 to Ottsville and then 
to DePue. He was a Civil War veteran. After 'he 
war he ran a blacksmith shop across from the home 
of Mrs. Allie Diltz. Mrs. Viola Isaacson and Miss 
Angeline Lusinger, his two daughters, still live 
here. His first wife was Minerva Morseman. After 
her death he married Ermina Smith, whose family 
lived at Indiantown. He served the town as presi- 
dent of the board. 

Ursula Lusinger, grandmother of 
Mrs. Viola Isaacson and Angie 
Lusinger, DePue. 


Nicholas Lusinger, grandfather of 
Mrs. Viola Isaacson and Angle 
Lusinger, DePue. 

Lusinger, Nicholas 

Nicholas Lusinger, the father of Andrew and 
Jacob Lusinger, was born in 1815 and brought his 
family to this country in 1851. His home was where 
the Peter Miscevic family now reside. 

Lindquist, John 

John and Christine Lindquist came from Swed- 
en to Princeton in 1881, and to DePue in 1883. They 
lived in the house moved back from where the 
Tyrer house now stands. After four years they 
purchased a home where George Barnes, Sr., now 
lives. John, Jr., a son, still lives here and his sister, 
Olive Lindquist Berglund, lives with him. 

Nawa, Stephen 

Stephen Nawa was born at Schlesien, in 1857, 
and came to America in 1882. He served three 
years in the German army. Before coming to 
America, he married Elizabeth Kalthoff in 1860, a 
sister of Mrs. Bernard Yocks. He served the village 
as alderman and was a check-weigher at the 
mines. A son, Benjamin, lives on a farm east of 

Marliere, Frank, Sr. 

Frank Marliere Sr. was born in France in 1853, 
and came to America about 1880. He came to De- 
Pue in 1886. His first wife was Stephanie Muller. 
After her death he married Mrs. Julia DePoru, who 
still lives here. Ernest, a son of the first wife, is the 
only child still living here. 

Mecum, Frank 
Frank Mecum, born in 1865, was a son of Jo- 
seph Mecum who came here before the Civil War, 
from Ohio. His wife was Mary Schmaus. His mo- 
ther came from Germany with the Rick and LeBahn 
families. Robert and Alpha still reside here in the 
home place. 

Metevia, Eli 

Eli Metevia, a French-Canadian, lived in the 
house just south of Gardner Mills. Little is known 
of them, but many old villagers remember John 
(Doc) and Miles (Miley), their two sons. 

Miller, Jacob 
Jacob Miller was known for his wine farm, lo- 
cated where George Barnes, Jr., now lives. He 
served the town council in 1884. 

Louis Monnett, 
grandfather of Kenneth Monnett 

Monnett, Louis 
Louis Monnett was the father of Charles Mon- 
nett, and grand-father of Kenneth Monnett. He 
served the town board in 1891. Charles was bom 
in Peru and later lived at Bureau, where Kenneth 
was born in 1896. He was married to Elvene Hop- 
pler, daughter of George Hoppler Sr. Kenneth still 
lives here with his daughter, Mrs. Henry Benkse. 

Meyer, George 

George Meyer was born at Seatonville, in 1870, 
and came to DePue in 1882. He was foreman at the 
Three I bridge from 1899 and overseer of the pump- 
ing station. His wife was Selina Tucker, daughter 
of J. Tucker. Their home was the second house 
south of Ira Searl's home. 

McKinstry, W. J. 

W. J. McKinstry was born in North Belfast, 
Ireland in 1825, and his wife, Frances Weir, in 
South Belfast. He came from Ireland in 1846, to 
Peru, and about 1876, moved to DePue. In the town 
records it is reported he had the job of graveling 
the village walks in 1879. His son, Robert, was 
born in 1880 and in his later years was custodian 
at the public school. 

In 1891, after a seige of scarlet fever, Robert lost 
his speech and went to Jacksonville, 111., where he 
learned the manual alphabet. He was married 
to Nellie McCormick, who was born in 1884 in St. 
Joseph, Mo. They met at the school in Jacksonville. 


A daughter, Mrs. Melvin Woolley and a son John, 
still reside here. Their home was a farm one-fourth 
mile west along the Rock Island. 

Paden, Robert D. 

Robert D. Paden was born in Nova Scotia in 
1843 and came to the U.S. in 1846. He came to 
DePue in 1885 and worked in the mine. At the out- 
break of the Civil War he enlisted in a regiment 
from Pennsylvania which served in many of the 
big battles of the war. His wife was Mary Jones 
of Branchville, Pa. In 1888, when the Jacob Bern- 
hardts moved to Nebraska, the Padens moved to 
"The Green House" where they operated a hotel. 
He served the town many ways and was president 
of the school board. The only surviving member 
of his large family now living in DePue, is Robert 
E. Moran, son of a daughter Martha. 

Pope, Charles 

Charles Pope, son of Mrs. W. J. Pope, was born 
about 1875 in DePue, and lived his entire life here. 
His wife was Katie Guenther, daughter of Ernest 
Guenther. He served the village as town clerk for 
a good many years. His mother was born in 1837, 
Onandaga County, N.Y., and came to DePue in 
1868. Mr. Pope was a United Brethern minister. 
A son Frank, was town clerk in 1884. Mr. Pope was 
a street commissioner in 1874. Mrs. B. F. Ellis was 
their daughter. 

Powers, Frank 

Frank Powers was born at Perrysburg, Ohio 
in 1857, and came to Lockport, 111., when 16 years 
of age. He came to DePue in 1886, where he en- 
gaged in fishing. Later he conducted an ice busi- 
ness, with large ice houses filled from the lake. 
He served the village as a councilman and was 
president of the school board. Mrs. Powers was 
Fannie Jane Harris. His son Edward, and a daugh- 
ter, Mrs. Herman Graham, still reside in DePue. 

Seeburger, John 

John Seeburger was born in Baden, Germany, 
about 1840. He arrived in the U.S. and in DePue 
in 1873, with John and Katrina, and his wife, who 
was Jacobina Himmel. He served as constable and 
was a lamp lighter for the village. His first work 
here was terracing the Link farm (now owned by 
Aldo Biagioni) for raising grapes. Their home was 
where Stanley Piascyk now lives. 

Savage, Charles 

Charles Savage came first to Hennepin, in 1831, 
and in 1836 settled on the B. N. Dunterman farm 
near Hollawayville. He owned around 300 acres 
bluff and valley farmland, 200 acres of this was 
sold to the M.P.Z. Co. He was famous as auction- 
eer, and his outstanding sale was $40,000 of Hall 
property sold in fifteen minutes. 

He was married to Henrietta Young, whose 
family came to Selby Township in 1842. After sell- 
ing their land here they moved to a farm near 
Princeton. A granddaughter, Mrs. Lottie Marple 
Chase, her sons, Harry, John and Edward, and a 
granddaughter, Mrs. George Turner, still reside 
here. Also George Barnes, Jr., son of Kate Savage 

Shcrw, Thomas 

Thomas Shaw was of English descent and 
served the town board in 1881. His son John, or 
"Poppy" was the last survivor of the family here. 

Smith, Frank, Sr. 

Frank Smith was a brother of Paul, and lived 
on a farm where White City begins. His wife was 
Mary Nisley, daughter of Samuel Nisley, whose 
home was across from the Park. Glen Smith, a 
grandson, is the only member of the family here. 

Smith, Paul 

Paul J. Smith was born in LaSalle County in 
1854, and grew up near DePue on his father's farm. 
His wife was Johanna Huber, born in 1860, in De- 
Pue. He was supervisor of Selby Township for at 
least thirty years, and served on the school board 
many years. Mrs. John Gurnett (Lottie) and Wil- 
liam, Adelaide, Mrs. Nelle Kelly and Mrs. Grace 
McClure, still live here. A son, Henry, lives in 
Spring Valley. 

Smith, W. B. 

W. B. Smith lived where Nola and Raymond 
Glover now reside. Mrs. Smith was Louisa Wil- 
liams, a sister of Mrs. Worman. She was a devoted 
member of the Congregational church, and was a 
person who could be called on in all emergencies. 
They are well known by their children. Alma Lar- 
ens who taught in the schools here, and George 
O. Smith, County Superintendent of Schools and 
later Princeton City schools. A daughter, Nora 
O'Byrne, was also a teacher and lived here until 
her death four years ago. 

Sullivan, William 

William Sullivan was born in Ireland and came 
to Illinois when a mere boy. He entered the service 
of the C. R. I. & P railroad in 1878 and came to 
DePue in 1882 as section foreman. He served on 
the town board in 1904. The Sullivan home stood 
between the railroad depot and the main gate of 
the Zinc Co. and was later moved to its present 
site. Two daughters, Elizabeth and Catherine, a 
son Timothy reside here. 

Sutcliffe, C. E. 

C. E. Sutcliffe was born in Hennepin in 1868, 
and came to DePue in the late '90s. He was the 
proprietor of a butcher shop. 

Strickmaker, John 

John Strickmaker was born in Wichita, Kansas 
in 1872 and came to DePue in 1878. In 1880, the 
family returned to Kansas but came back to DePue 
in 1890. The family home stood where Ray Gore's 
home is now. He was employed in later years at 
the river bridge. He never married. He had two 
brothers, Frank and Joe, who lived in the family 

Sweeley, Captain Warren 

Captain Warren Sweeley came to DePue in 
1886 and was married to a member of the Sted- 
man family. He served on the village board in 
different capacities for many years. The family 
lived where Ernest Marliere lives now. 


Throne, Julius 

Julius Throne lived "up the track" from the 
East Crossing. A son, Otto, married the daughter 
of Henry Stange, and she was the granddaughter 
of Bart Litchfield. Mr. Throne was drowned in the 
Illinois river. 

Thiers, Joseph 

Joseph Thiers, was born in France, a relative of 
an ex-president Thiers of France. He came to De- 
Pue in 1885, and was married to the widow of Ja- 
cob Wolter. Her son, Peter Wolter, was born in 
Peru in 1863, and came to DePue when 18 years 
of age. He and his brother, John, were carpenter 
contractors. The Thiers' farm ■was west of where 
George Barnes, Sr., now lives. 

Tinley, Edward 

Edward Tinley, was a well-known business 
man for nearly 50 years. A native of Southwall, 
England, he was born in 1833, and came to this 
country with his father and mother in 1848, to 
Frankfort, Illinois. 

In 1855, the family moved to what is now 
known as Tinley Park, Illinois. In 1854, he entered 
the employ of the railroad as assistant to his fa- 
ther at the station. In 1856, he came to DePue as 
station agent. His wife was Dorcas Kittell of Men- 
dota. They had no children but raised several 
nieces and nephews. His duties at the railroad did 
not engage his entire time and he bought and 
shipped grain, and was in partnership with Jacob 
Bernhardt and J. H. Hassler. Due to poor health, 
he sold his business interests in DePue in 1895. 

Mr. and Mrs. Tinley traveled extensively in 
Europe from 1876 on. He returned to Chicago in 
1898, after an extended trip in Canada and lived 
at the Plaza Hotel in Chicago, where he passed 
crway in 1903. He was cremated according to his 
wishes and the ashes were conveyed to Princeton. 
He served the tov\^n board in many different cap- 
acities and was very active in the Congregational 
Church here, being choir director for many years. 

Tucker, J. 

J. Tucker was born in England in 1833, and came 
to the U.S. in 1866, locating near Pittsburgh, Pa. 
After a trip back to England, he returned to DePue 
in 1885. His home was located on a street where 
the main gate of the Plant is now, about the third 
house from it. His oldest daughter was married 
to Aaron Symmonds. 

Tucker, Harry 
Harry Tucker was born in England in 1854, and 
came to the U.S. in 1881, locating near Blooming- 
ton, 111. He came to DePue in 1886. His wife, whom 
he married in 1895, was Mrs. Betsy Savage. 

Walker, Arthur 

Arthur Walker came first to the Ridge from 
Indiana. In the late '90s he moved to DePue. He 
was married to Ella McCune, whose family were 
early settlers in Bureau county. Mrs. Sid Helmer, 
a daughter, and two sons, Leo and Elmo, live here. 

White, Mike 

Mike White came to DePue in 1847, and settled 
near the village. He served in the Civil War, and 

wound up in Andersonville Prison. He was laid 
out with the dead but was saved by a considerate 
Confederate soldier. Scarcely able to walk or move, 
he finally got home to DePue, weighing only 68 

Wolff. Clem 

Clem Wolff, born in 1866 in Germany, came 
to DePue in 1882. His sister was Mrs. Bernard 
Yocks, and Mrs. James Lawless is his niece. He 
was an expert painter and decorator. Mr. Wolff 
never married. 

Worman, W. B. 

W. B. Worman was born in Germany and was 
a pioneer grape grower on the hills west of DePue. 
His home was where Mr. and Mrs. Leo Utterback 
now reside. 

Yocks, Bernard 

Bernard Yocks, was born in Wastphalia, Ger- 
many in 1853, and came to the U.S. in 1881, going 
to Braidwood first. He came to DePue a few months 
later. He was married to Marie Kalthoff, a sister 
of Mrs. Stephen Nawa. He was village constable 
and lamplighter, after years at the mine. His 
daughter, Mrs. James Lawless, lives here. 

Younker, John 

John Younker, a nephew of Warren Sweeley, 
came to DePue from Prince Edward Island, when 
20 years old. His wife, Margaret McKinstry, a 
daughter of W. J. McKinstry, was born at Peru, 
Illinois in 1868. Their home was about one-fourth 
mile west of DePue near the Rock Island tracks. 
The former Carrie Younker Helmer was their young- 
est daughter. 

Zimmerman, Heiuy 

Henry Zimmerman was born at Scranton, Pa., 
Oct. 23, 1840. In 1888, they moved to DePue from 
Morris where Barbara (Mrs. George Glover) was 
born in 1878. He was married to Catherine Paden, 
a sister of Robert D. Paden, at Pottsville, Pa. Glen, 
Raymond, Thomas and Nolo, Glover and Albert 
Sanger, grandchildren, and Anita Sanger Hay- 
wood, live here. 

The following is a list of names taken from 
town council proceedings starting in 1867, and no 
further trace of them can be found: 

J. Hassler — 1869-70 Mayor 

A. Stiefel — father of Mrs. August Bansch, Sr. 

R. Wolfe 

Moses Fox — wife of Diantha Solomon 

L. Werner 

Charles Hilliard — 1875 

Albert Eiselman 

Albert LeBahn 

Aaron Symmonds — wife was daughter of 
J. Tucker 

W. M. Young — 1871 

H. G. Young — clerk 1870 

E. C. Wilson — pound master 1871. 

H. Barber — village board 1 87 1 

W. H. Hill — village clerk 1873 

Amos Tuttle — Pound Master 1873 

C. Druher — Judge of Election 1873 


D. Myers — council 1874 

Adolph Dunterman — town council, married to 
Caroline, sister of John Frey 

John M. Orthel — clerk, 1874, in business with 
Jacob Bernhord 

W. Hoskins — a Judge and personal friend 
of Abraham Lincoln. 

Philip Hassler — 1877 

Jacob Schmidt — 1877 

Sam and John Caughey — 1877 

John A. Reed — Constable 1877 

Edward Haven — Constable 

D. W. Lindsay — 1878 

Pat Curran — cousin of John Gurnett 

Thomas Dowling — street commissioner and 

George O. Wheeler — village clerk. 

W. B. Worman — 1883 

James Casford — 1883. His wife was Elizabeth 

Jessie Tying — a teacher 
D. Griffin — a teacher 
S. G. Hicks — 1869 

Searl's Ridge Families 

There has always existed a close relationship 
between the DePue and Searl's Ridge people. The 
histories interlace to the extent that one would be 
incomplete without the other. These are early fam- 

Bohm, William 

William Bohm was born in Germany in 1856, 
the son of John and Mary Wolf Bohm. He married 
Christina Edlefson. They had 11 children; three 
died in infancy. Those living are Edward, John, 
William, Emma, Arthur, Carl, Jennie, and Lester. 
Mr. Bohm started out in life empty-handed and 
grew to be a prosperous farmer. 

Clark, John 

John Clark married Jane Bailee in 1829 and 
came to Searl's Ridge in 1830 on horseback in com- 
pany with Judge William Hoskins and party of 17. 
In 1831, they entered a claim at Lake DePue. In 
1832 when the Black Hawk war broke out they 
were forced to move to Fort Wilson, six miles east 
of Hennepin. 

They saw the first steam boat to land at DePue, 
then called Clark's Landing. They moved to the 
Ridge in 1844. Mr. Clark died in 1848. They had 
7 children. Mrs. Clark married William Charles in 
1855. John and Robert Clark came with their fam- 
ily from Kentucky and settled at Clark's Landing 
(DePue). They received land from the government 
in 1830. They later sold it to Ben Newell and moved 
to the Ridge. John married Harriet Reynolds. 

They had 6 children; a son Ben married Cordil- 
ia Searl and became parents of Bessie, Alvah, 
Harve, and Bert. Alvah and wife Edythe Randall 
who still resides on the Ridge had 7 children. Dale, 
Ronald, and Zelah are deceased; other children ore 
Ruth Burkman, Dorene Jones and Maurice. Their 
daughter, Berniece Bryant and family reside on 
the Ridge. John, another son of John and Marriet 
Clark, had 6 children. His dcmghter Emma married 
Ed Meyer. Mrs. Ben Dunterman is their daughter. 

Hassler, John 

John Hassler was born in Zurich, Switzerland 
in 1764. He married Christina C. Rossig and came 
to America in 1834, landing in New Orleans, then 
came up the Mississippi to Hennepin. They pur- 

chased a claim of 1,800 acres of land from John 
Hall in Selby Township. 

It was due to their influence that many Ger- 
man families settled in Hollowayville. They had 
7 children — John, Rudolph, Henry, Charles, Her- 
man, Charlotte, and Jacob. Mr. Hassler only lived 
two years after coming to America. 

Herzog, Anton 

Anton Herzog was born in Germany in 1844. 
He came to America in 1867. He married Annie 
Rouh. They had four children — William, Joseph, 
Elizabeth who married Philip Link, and John who 
married Rosa Frey. Clarence Herzog and family 
DePue, and Clarice Link, Peru, are descendants of 
the John and Rosa Herzog family. 

Hoskins, William 

William Hoskins came to the Ridge in 1831 
from Kentucky. He married Rebecca Kellums. They 
had six children. Abraham Lincoln spent a night 
in the Hoskins home after speaking in Princeton 
on July 4, 1856. The Hoskins were the great grand- 
parents of Mrs. Pearl Mavity Archer of DePue. Hos- 
kins was the first Bureau County Judge. 

Lange, John 

John Lange and Helene Krueger Lange and 
two children — Charles and Fredereca — came to 
Chicago from Micklenburg, Germany. After exper- 
iencing the Chicago fire, they moved to Searl's 
Ridge to farm. They had 12 children — Herman, 
Louis, Mennie, Albert, and Fred died during a diph- 
theria epidemic; others were Henry, William, Anna 
Adolph, and Frank, the only living child. Miss 
Jessie Lange of DePue and sister Alta Frances ore 
daughters of the Charles and Elizabeth Schmaus 
Lange family. 

Link, Jacob 

Jacob Link was born in Rhine, Germany in 
1843 and came to America in 1864 to Peru, 111. He 
worked as a farm hand. He married Philopina Doll. 
In 1881 he purchased a farm in Selby Township. 
Their children were Elizabeth, Katie, Jacob, Philip, 
Mary George, and Lucy. Philip married Elizabeth 
Herzog and farmed in Selby Township many years. 
He served as road commissioner. Their daughters. 


Mrs. Luella Wolfer and Mrs. Violet Wolf ore Bur- 
eau County farmers. 

Marple, David 

David Marple was born in Bureau county — 
no date was available. He fought in the Civil War 
in Virginia. He married Isabell Fox. They had 12 
children — Richard, Harry, Rosie, Ella, Dan, Mary, 
Dwight, Lucy, Nora, Minnie, John, and Rosie Marie. 
Mike Marple, son of Dan, and John, Harry, and Ed- 
ward, sons of John, reside in DePue. 

McWilliams, J. F. 

J. F. McWilliams was born in Ohio in 1843 and 
came to Illinois at the age of 15 with his parents, 
William F. and Mary (Van Wy). He served as 
township supervisor, assessor, and collector. He 
married Mary Miller. They had 3 children — Char- 
les D., Bertha, and William. He was one of the 
most highly esteemed residents of this community. 

Na^va, Stephen 

Stephen Nawa was born in Schlesien, Ger- 
many in 1857. He had an advanced education 
there. He married Elizabeth Kalthoff and came to 
America in 1882. They resided for some years in 
DePue. He was a coal miner for four years. He 
rented a farm from Charles Savage; then pur- 
chased his own farm. Ten children were born to 
Mr. and Mrs. Nawa, namely, Matilda, William, 
Frank, Ben, Fred, Emma, Annie, Mary, John, and 
F'reda. He served as alderman at DePue. They 
were members of the Toilers. Mrs. William Nawa, 
(Laura Petersen) resides in DePue. 

Rauh, Joseph 

Joseph Rauh was born in Bavaria, Germany in 
1826. He married Elizabeth Young and came to 
America in 1851 landing in New Orleans; then he 
came up the Mississippi to St. Louis and later to 
Peru. He began to farm and in 1863 was able to 
purchase 160 acres on the Ridge. They had 8 
children — William, Joseph, Anna, Andrew, Eliza- 
beth, Philopena, Valentine, and John. Mr. Rauh 
married Mrs. Louisa Rakor Cogler in 1881. They 
had one son, Henry. 

Rick, J. C. 

J. C. Rick was born in Selby Township in 1873, 
the son of Charles and Emma Lebahn Rick who 
came to America in 1869. He farmed 144 acres be- 
tween DePue and HoUowayville. He married Kate 
Link. They had 3 children — Laura, Clarence, and 
Florence. They were members of the German Luth- 
eran church. 

Rhyne, Timothy 

Timothy Rhyne was born in Bureau county in 
1857. He was the son of John and Russina Seorl 
Rhyne. He owned and formed 327 acres of im- 
proved land and engaged in stock raising. He mar- 
ried Lillie B. Smith in 1879. They had 8 children — 
Lillian, Myrtle, Gertrude, Charles, Joseph, Darlene, 
Hazel who resides in Bureau, Clyde and family 
and Rhyne Ellis, a grandson and family in DePue. 
He was road commissioner for 12 years. They were 

Searl Families 

Searl's Ridge first known as Hoskins Prairie 
was part of Putnam county when the five Searl 
brothers came to the Ridge to settle. They were 
Brown, Job, John, Timothy, and David. David later 
moved to Hennepin. 

John S. Searl arrived in Bureau county in 1834. 
He was the son of Brown and Barbara Ann Hosier 
Searl. He had 3 brothers — Tim, Peter, William, 
and a sister Melessa; all moved elsewhere. John 
S. continued to live in Bureau county. He married 
Amanda Miller. They had 10 children. 

E. Grant Searl, son of John and Amanda, was 
born in Selby Township on the old home place in 
1868. He married Katie Heitz. They had 3 childred, 
Ira, a resident of DePue, survives. E. Grant was 
farmer, stock raiser, and served as road commis- 
sioner in 1906. 

Brown Searl farmed 640 acres on the Ridge, 
secured from the government in 1836. He died in 
1869 and his wife in 1892. Both are buried on the 

Smith, W. R. 

W. R. Smith was born in Ohio in 1829 and was 
the son of Isaac and Lucinda Hartley Smith. He 
came to Bureau county in 1852. He moved away 
but came back in 1860. He married Susan Hart- 
zell. They had 10 children. Alonzo and John oper- 
ated the home farm with sister Linnie. They raised 
Norman horses, Angus cattle, and a race horse 
called "Cyclone." They were Congregationalists. 
Their other children were Melissa, Viola, Lilly B., 
Mary L., John, Nora, and Edith. 

Stuber, William 

William and Catherine Lindenmier Stuber set- 
tled in this area over 75 years ago. Mr. Stuber came 
from Edenkoben, Germany at the age of 14 in 
1854. Mrs. Stuber was born in Peru. She was a 
practical nurse, (Midwife) and will be remembered 
by many old settlers. They had 4 children — Cath- 
erine and Elizabeth are deceased; Fred and wife 
live on the homeplace, and Emma. Mrs. Oscar Col- 
lier, a granddaughter, lives on the Ridge. 

White, Michael 

Michael White was born in Munich, Germany 
in 1834. He married Elizabeth Sa Lee who was 
reared on the Ridge. "Mike" White was a Civil 
War Veteran and was imprisoned at Andersonviiie 
for quite a spell. Their children were William, 
George, Belle, Mary, and Tiberias (Bidge). 

Searl's Ridge School 

About 100 years ago the first known school 
building was a log cabin just east of the cemetery. 
W. R. Searl and Lucinda Hoskins were students. 
The informant couldn't recall other names. 

About 15 years later a frame building was 
erected south of the present site. The rocks used 
as corner stones can still be seen. In 1875, the larg- 
er building was built and Jeff Daves was the teach- 
er. There were about 60 pupils. 

According to records of County Supt. of 
Schools, Floyd French, 23 teachers had taught the 
Ridge School. Among them were Jessie Lange, 


Berniece Clark Bryant, and Grace Stuber. 

The school was closed in 1947 when the dis- 
trict combined with the Bureau school. Many of the 
Ridge students attended DePue high school. 

Searl's Ridge Church and Cemetery 

The Seorl family donated a plot of ground for 
the cemetery and adjoining land was purchased 
by the community. Searl's Ridge church was built 
in 1876. Many pioneers of this area, and Civil War 
veterans are buried on the Ridge, as it was the 
first cemetery. 

Searl's Ridge Ladies Aid was formed in 1914, 
and aided by the men kept the cemetery and 
church in readiness. 

In recent years it has been taken over by the 
Ridge Cemetery Association of Selby Township ap- 
pointed by the State. Trustees are M. Hassler, 
president; C. Wagner, vice-president; M. Clark, 
treasurer; Mrs. Oscar Collier, secretary; C. McCue, 
O. Collier, and Jim Marple. 

The first church was Methodist Episcopal called 
Ridge Chapel. It later became Congregational with 
Rev. Porker Hurless, pastor. W. Smith and son John 
were Sunday school superintendents. 

The church building has been taken over by 
a newly formed organization called The Hiltoppers. 
It will be remodeled into a social center. 

Sources oi Material Used in This 
History of Searl's Ridge 

1. Biographical History of Bureau, Marshall, 
and Putnam counties, published by S. J. Clarke 
Publishing Company, 1896. 

2. Bureau County Directory. J. C. Kelly and 
Company, Compilers and Publishers, 1897-98. Mrs. 
James Williams, Bureau, Illinois. 

3. Bureau County Republican. Centennial Ed- 
ition, 1937. 

4. Mrs. Oscar Collier, Princton, Illinois. 

5. Daily News Tribune. 

6. History of Bureau County, 1885. H. C. Brad- 
sby, by World Pub. Co. 

7. Marian Lange and Jessie Lange. 

8. Past and Present of Bureau county, George 
Garrington, published by Pioneer Publishing Com- 
pany, 1906. 

9. Mrs. Madge Pierce Podobinski. 
Compiled by Berneice Clark Bryant. Typed by 

Ruth Clark Burkman. 

Lake DePue 

The lake, approximately five miles long and 
three-fourths of a mile wide, was discovered by an 
early French missionary in 1673. The first Christian 
services in this area were held on its shore when 
Father Marquette landed, erected a cross, and said 
Mass. According to his journal "his party discov- 
ered the beautiful lake which they named DePue, 
and many Indians were camped nearby." It is 
also said that the lake was named for an early 
Indian trader. 

The purity of Lake DePue's water made the 
town famous for its ice industry, carried on the 

year around before the days of modern refrigera- 
tion. Chief among consumers of DePue ice were 
the W. L. Lemp Brewing Company and the An- 
heuser Busch Brewery, of St. Louis. 

The ice harvest furnished work all winter for 
all residents of DePue, and neighboring farmers 
with their horses. The breweries first erected an 
ice house on the lake shore that held 60,000 tons 
of ice and later built another to hold 40,000 tons. 

The Lempe Co., had a boat yard (where the 
playground is now) and an office. Docks were 
built all along the lake front. 

F. L. Powers & Co. Ice House near Lake DePue 


The breweries owned a fleet of barges of 800 
to 1400 tons capacity to transport the ice. The 
barges were towed into Lake DePue before it froze. 
A good winter would yield enough ice to fill the 
barges and ice houses. One winter the ice lasted 
long enough to cut ice for a pile of 30,000 tons. It 
was packed in sawdust. 

Twelve-year-old boys were paid 50 cents a day 
to work in the ice channels in 22 degrees below 
zero weather. Top wages were $1.75 a day for 
packers in the ice houses and railroad cars. Today 
the ice houses are gone. 

Another early industry of DePue was commer- 
cial fishing in Lake DePue and the Illinois river. 
Fishermen's shanties lined the lake shore, and 
boats, nets, seines, hoops, and trammels were fa- 
miliar to DePue residents. Many old timers built 
their own boats and kept them in repairs, and made 
their own nets. 

Fine fish sold for 5 to 7 cents a pound, and 
coarse fish from 3 to 5 cents. 

Old time fishermen included "Big Fish" Charles 
Nelson, Andrew Lusinger, Frank Powers and sons, 
George Hoppler and sons, the Strickmaker broth- 
ers, the Shaws and Marlieres. Frank Powers made 
the largest haul ever made at one time — 100,000 

Art Reistad, a Power's employee, remembers 
the big haul. He also remembers catching 25,000 
pounds of buffalo fish at one haul, which were sold 
on the Chicago market for 8 cents a pound. The 
largest buffalo weighed 25 pounds, but earlier 
settlers remember fish weighing 40 to 50 pounds. 

Reistad recalls good clamming days in DePue 
in 1910-11, when 10 carloads of clam shells were 
shipped to Muscatine, Iowa, for buttons. The Illi- 
nois River ranked second in the United States as a 
fish-producer at one time. There is very little com- 
mercial fishing now. 

Lake DePue was, and is, a source of pleasure, 
winter and summer, to local citizens and outsiders 
who come for boating, ice skating, hunting and 
fishing. Swimming is no longer enjoyed as the 
water is quite muddy. 

Show boats frequently came up the Mississip- 
pi and Illinois Rivers to Lake DePue. Chief among 
them were the "Cotton Blossom," "The Golden 
Rod" and "French's Sensation." Boat excursions 
were another river pleasure. "The Julia Belle," "The 
David Swain" and others came to DePue regularly 
for moonlight cruises and daytime trips to Peoria 
and return. These boats featured a dance orches- 
tra. There was bar, dining-room, and "lover's 

For many years the lake has not been opened 
to heavy traffic due to the "filling in" of silt. How- 
ever, many pleasure crafts take advantage of the 
lake during summer. 

Outboard regattas are held here annually, by 
the American Power Boat Association. Last year, 
1960, was the tenth year that the Divisional Cham- 
pionship races were held in DePue. This year, the 
A, P. B. A. National Championship races will be 
the feature attraction of the DePue Centennial cele- 
bration in September. 

Boat Races on July 4, 1914 

• * * 

Looking Toward DePue from Aldo Biagioni's Farm 


^stip yti8ww"w'^ ' ''ywwwiippppi 

Excursion Boat on Lake DePue — 1911 

First Labor Day — 1914 


Warehouse on Lake DePue — 1895 

Labor Day Celebration - 1914 - Lake DePue Commercial Club 


Lake DePue Park And Assembly 

Lake DePue, in close proximity to the Illinois 
River was a natural harbor or landing place for 
boots carrying freight and merchandise, and plea- 
sure boats. It was the center of attraction in the 
hey-dey of the Lake DePue Park and Assembly. 
It has long passed, but old residents can remember 
that it was grand while it lasted. 

This Bureau County summer resort was or- 
ganized in 1903 by Rev. Anderson with J. Yerly 
president, M. Elliott, secretary and D. H. Palmer 
treasurer. It was located one-half mile east of De- 
Pue in what is now known as the Park Addition. 

A Chautauqua and amusement park, it boasted 
an auditorium, also used as a dance pavilion, 
which was the second largest in the state. 

Audiences of 2,000 attended the meetings to 
hear such speakers as Co. Henry Wcrtterson; Capt. 
Richmond Hobson, the hero of the Merrimac; the 
Rev. Sam Jones, the original Sam Jones, famous 
orator and evangelist; Father I. J. Vaughn, and 
Samuel Gompers, president of the American Fed- 
eration of Laor. All were booked at the park with- 
in a few months. 

Other entertainment included the Chicago 
Lyceum Ladies quarter, Dixie Jubilee Singers, By- 
ron's Famous Minstrel and Glee Club. 

The Chicago, Rock Island and Peoria trains 
brought in many visitors, as did the Three-I trains 
that came to DePue on a spur from the main line 
at Howe. Steamboats, too, landed daily with Sun- 
day school picnics, labor union meetings, lodge 
outings and club parties. 

In the park were cottages and tents for rent 

and an up-to-date hotel with fine meals and ac- 
commodations, including telephone, telegraph and 
postal conveniences. There were rowbocrts, fishing 
boats and electric launches to be rented by the 
hour. Steamboat excursions took pleasure-seekers 
around the lake for 10 cents. Launch rides were 
the same price. 

Steamers of the Illinois River Packet Co., made 
daily trips from the park to the river towns of Henry, 
Hennepin, Lacon, Chillicothe and Peoria. Boats 
were of first class material, carpeted and cushioned. 

No liquor or gambling were allowed in the 
park, but entertainment was various and inexpen- 
sive — toboggan slide, 10 cents; shooting gallery, 
merry-go-round and ocean wave, 10 cents; diving 
board, 10 cents an hour; bowling, 10 cents; base- 
ball games, 25 cents; ping pong, 10 cents; tennis, 
croquet, hammocks and swings, free. 

The park had its own stables, and any demand 
for carriages or saddle horses could be met. 
The drives were charming, and Bureau County 
boasted of her roads. 

The park was noted for its baseball games. 
The line-up of the 1904 team was: Chris Gieler, 
third base; Herman Bansch, second; Larry McGon- 
igle, first base and Captain; W. Seeburger, short- 
stop; W. Hynds, right field; A. Smith, center field; 
O. Throne, left field; Ben Yocks, pitcher; Henry 
Gieler, catcher. Substitutes were R. Flick, and Al. 
Bansch, and Ray Humphrey was manager. 

But in two years, the park was closed — ex- 
penses couldn't be met, and the project died as 
quickly as it was born. 


Pavilion and Club House 


The New Jersey Zinc Company 

The rapid expansion of industry in this country 
around the turn of the century greatly increased 
the requirements for slab zinc in the Middle West. 
The New Jersey Zinc Company, established in the 
east since 1848, decided that additional smelting 
capacity was needed to take care of the increased 

The search for amid-west plant site ended in 

Here were ample freight facilities, proximity 
to the Illinois coal fields and pleasant living con- 

Construction of the new plant began in 1905 
on land which had comprised the farms of Charles 
Savage and Wm. Harrison. Additional land for 
the plant site was purchased from Bernard Yocks, 
Jemimah Nisley, Polly Ann Pannebaker, ]. H. Gra- 
ham, Frank Marliere, Fred Heitz, Ida Ellis, Nicholas 
Luchsinger, J. Wolter, Henry Huber, J. Tucker, E. 
Thron, P. J. Smith, Oliver Keim and others. The 
plant site comprised approximately 175 acres. 

The first plant built had facilities for the pro- 
duction of slab zinc and sulfuric acid, and when 
completed was the largest plant of its kind in the 
United States. In 1923 a plant for the manufacture 
of lithopone, a widely used zinc pigment, was add- 
ed to supply the growing demand for that product. 
The lithopone plant was operated until 1956 when 
the increasing use of titanium dioxide as a pig- 
ment made the production of lithopone uneconomic 
and the lithopone operation was shut down. 

With the start of the plant in 1905, W. A. Moore 
was appointed plant superintendent, to be followed 
by M. F. Chase in 1906. Chase remained in charge 
until 1914 when W. M. Kelsey was made superin- 
tendent. In 1916 D. C. Wray was placed in charge 
of the plant and in 1921 he was replaced by H. G. 
Hixon, under whose guidance the plant weathered 
two depressions and rapidly expanded to meet the 

demands of World War II. In 1948, after 27 years 
of service both to the plant and the community, 
Hixon retired. His duties were assumed by N. K. 
Banks, who was succeeded in 1957, by Paul Jensen, 
the present superintendent. 

The number of people employed at the plant 
has varied with demand, products made, and tech- 
nical changes of process. At present 380 persons 
are employed. 

The employment at the DePue plant has been 
stable, as is evidenced by the long years of service 
of many of its employees. Of the present enroll- 
ment over 85 percent have service of 5 years or 
more. Nearly 57 percent have service of over 20 
years; 33 percent over 25 years, 22 percent over 30 
years. Eight employees have service of over 40 
years, 5 have service of over 45 years. 

Out of the DePue plant of the New Jersey Zinc 
Company comes a steady stream of zinc products 
for use of many American industries. The automo- 
bile industry is the largest user of die castings 
made from alloys containing Horse Head special 
zinc which is 99.99^ percent pure. Zinc die castings 
are used extensively in the manufacture of wash- 
ing machines, refrigerators, business machines, 
hardware and small tools. 

Horse Head Special zinc, along with slightly 
lower grades, is consumed in large quantities by 
the galvanizing industry in the production of zinc 
coatings on steel. 

A great deal of Horse Head special zinc is 
used in the brass industry, to produce high quality 
brass products such as household hardware, plumb- 
ing equipment and rods and tubes for industrial 

The Company is also an important producer 
of metal powders which are finding increasing use 
in the fabrication, by powder metallurgy methods, 
of small metal parts. 

Acid Plant and First Smelter Building 


1903 — Where Zinc Works main gate stands today 

Polish - Austrian - Creation Population 

A large percent of DePue's population for over 
50 years has been families of these descents. Their 
customs, polka dances, accordion music, and sing- 
ing groups, mixed with other customs of the village, 
helped make DePue a typical American town. 

Their recipes from "old country" for Potica, 
Krapi, Pierogi, Strudel, Goulash, sausages and soups 
have grown in popularity through the years. 

Many of the early families were saloon keep- 
ers. Some were in business and the second gener- 
ation have continued in their parents' establish- 
ments. Helen and Tony Grbac continue to run the 
dairy; Vincent and Louis Machek in their father's 
market; and Mary Planten in the Vozel-Zickar store. 

Most of this population are members of St. 

Mary's parish. They have always taken an active 
interest in school and civic organizations. Many 
of the second and third generations have acquired 
degrees in education. Many are in business else- 

The lodges of these people are listed in another 
chapter. Of special interest in 1916 was the Polish 
Falcons of DePue, Nest 701, of the Polish Alliance 
of America. Their petition asking permission to drill 
and parade in the Village was signed by 100 sig- 
natures. Listed are a few: Sulina, Potoschi, Giboro- 
ski, Meger, Spayer, Kemieciak, Trock, Gols, Koszlo- 
ski, Kendzierski, Kuss, Truszkowski, Dembauski, 
Zielieskiewicz, Zyskowski, Badinowicz, Iwaniki and 

I.O.O.F. Hall In 1880; New Gym Stands Here Today 


The Mexican Population 

The first Mexican family to come to DePue was 
the Phillip Borrosas in 1915. Mr. and Mrs. Barrosa 
are deceased, but their son Manuel and family live 
in DePue. Their other children have moved av/ay. 

The Apolinar Gomez family came in 1917 after 
living a short time in Bureau. Seven of their chil- 
dren have moved away, but Isabel, a teacher in 
the Peru Roosevelt school, lives at home. Mr. Go- 
mez will retire from the New Jersey Zinc Company 
in July. 

The Jesus and Faustino Barajas came in 1918 
and moved away in the 1930's. From 1918 to 1923, 
the following families came; Hilario Rodriquez, Sr., 
Sabino Padillo, Peter Manrriquez and his parents, 
Antonio Cerda and Steve Torres. Others came but 
later moved to Davenport, Iowa, in the 1940's. In 
1924 the Manuel Galindo, Sr., family came. Mrs. 
Galindo passed away in 1961 and Mr. Galindo re- 
turned to Mexico. 

There are now approximately fifty-five families 
in DePue, most of them being second generation 
young adults. The Padillas, Manrriquezs, Castane- 
das, and Montezes are one "big family." 

They had their own customs and music, and 

organized a band in the early 1930's, playing at so- 
cial gatherings and several times at P-TA meetings. 
The young people organized a club called the Az- 
tecs. In the 1940's it was reorganized and called 
the Mexican Youth Club. It promoted sports, dances 
and contests and existed until 1950. 

The Mexicans are members of St. Mary's par- 
ish. They presented as a gift to the church, a fluor- 
escent light halo-frame for the main altar. 

Their special foods, such as tocas and enchil- 
adas, are enjoyed by many DePue people at the 
Lakeview tavern, which is operated by the Jesus 
Venegas family. 

Forty-three boys and two girls from DePue 
served in World War II. Joseph Espinoza gave his 
life in Germany in 1945. 

Some of the second generation have become 
teachers, nurses, musicians and businessmen. This 
year Manuel Salcedo was elected to the town 
board. Miss Lupe Ponce, a graduate of the DePue 
schools and Northern State Teachers' College, has 
taught in the DePue schools for the past ten years. 
It was through her efforts we were able to compile 
this short history of the Mexican population. 

The Spanish Population 

The Spanish families, smaller in number than 
the other three nationalities listed, came in the early 
1900's. The men were "furnace men" at the plant. 
Some entered into business at various times, in- 
cluding the Blanco, Garcia, and Suarez families. 
Some of the second generation are in business in 
DePue and elsewhere; others have acquired college 
degrees and are teachers and nurses. 

Prominent early Spanish families were the 

Blancos: Max, Tom, Manuel and Martin; the Suar- 
ezes: Vincent, Angel, Manuel, Joseph and Olegar- 
io; the Garcias: Joseph, Angel and Servando; Man- 
uel Busto, Manuel Modesto, Joseph Martinez, A. 
Alvarez, Marcelino Rodriquez, and the Menendez, 
Lopez, Vega and Fernandez families. 

It has been reported that at one time, there 
were 27 nationalities in the village. 

George M. Bryant Store — 1906 


History of St. Mary's Parish, DePue, Illinois 


Although a history of Bureau County, pub- 
lished a century ago, tells us that the first Chris- 
tian services held in Bureau County were held m 
1673, when Father Marquette, a missionary priest 
landed on the shore of Lake DePue, erected a 
cross and said Mass, there is no record of any fur- 
ther Catholic services in DePue, until more than 
two centuries had passed. 

In the early 1900's, the Catholics of DePue, 

numbering then about seventy-five families, were 
served by visiting priests from Peru, LaSalle and 
Spring Valley, in the early mission. Services were 
held in Fowler's Hall, on the second floor of what 
is today known as the Lakeview Tavern. 

In this hall was solemnized the first Catholic 
wedding in DePue, in September, 1908, that of 
Monica Truck and Vincent Staskiewicz, the parents 
of Ray Staskiewicz. 

Polish Church DePue — 1907 

The Catholic population of DePue at that time 
was known as St. Mary of Czestochowa, when it 
was organized in 1908. In 1909, a frame church 
building was erected in the White City district, on 
land donated by the late Oliver Keim. The parish 
was under the pastorate of Fr. Casimir Truszynshi 
of St. Valentine's in Peru. He was succeeded in turn 
by Father Przybyz and Father Dwernicki. 

Located as it was, aw^ay from the main part 
of town, the frame church was inconveniently lo- 
cated for many of its parishioners, so in 1916, it 
was moved from the site in White City to the pres- 
ent church site in the Park Addition. 

In 1914, Fr. Anthony Majewski became the 
resident pastor, serving until 1919. During his pas- 
torate the parish purchased a large club house 
from the New Jersey Zinc Co. The building stood 
on the present site of St. Mary's Hall, and had been 
used as a hotel when DePue was known as a resort 

town. The building was converted into a school 
and rectory, and was used for a time for church 

Early in 1917, a disastrous fire destroyed the 
school and rectory building. A new brick parish 
house was erected in 1918, at a cost of $8,000. 

In 1919, Father S. F. Kubiak replaced Fr. Ma- 
jewski, serving until 1930. During this time a new 
school was erected. It was staffed by Felician Sis- 
ters, with an enrollment of over 100 pupils. During 
the depression years it became necessary to dis- 
continue the school, and the building became 
known as St. Mary's Hall. 

Tragedy struck a second time in 1924, when the 
frame church building was destroyed by fire. Im- 
mediately plans were made for rebuilding, and ni 
1925, a new brick structure erected at a cost of 
$30,000.00 was dedicated with appropriate services. 
By 1948, the indebtedness had all been cleared. 


Mary's Catholic Church and Rectory — 1961 

In September, 1930, Father M. T. Szalewski 
succeeded Father Kubiak, remaining until 1952, 
when ill health forced his retirement, and Father 
Dzuryo, the present pastor, succeeded him. 

Meanwhile the church has shown a steady 
growth in membership, with many nationalities rep- 
resented, and the name was changed to St. Mary's. 
Today there are over 300 families in its membership. 

Included among the organizations active in 
supporting church programs and raising funds for 
the various necessities of the parish are the Holy 
Name Society, St. Anne's Sodality, Young Ladies 
Altar Sodality, and the Immaculate Heart of Mary 

Playing an important part in church life are 
the senior and junior choirs, with Miss Nancy Rauh 
as organist. During the past, this important posi- 
tion has been filled by Mrs. Fay Gutshall and Mrs. 
Vincent Staskiewicz (both now deceased). Miss Ju- 
lie Rettko (Mrs. Robert Drugan), Miss Susan Rettko, 
(Mrs. David Kristo), Miss Judith Szygenda (Mrs. 
Ronald Actis) and Miss Barbara Staskiewicz. 

Vocations include five nuns who have dedicat- 
ed their lives to the service of God, namely: 

Sister Mary Benigna, the former Catherine 
Ladyga, daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Peter 
Ladyga, and a twin sister of Julius Ladyga, of the 
Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception. 

Sister Mary Loretta, the former Martha Anne 
Terando, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Terando, 
of the Sisters of St. Francis of the Immaculate Con- 

Sister Clare Marie, the former Delores Giovon- 
ine, daughter of Angel and the Icrte Johanna Leon- 
ard Giovanine, of the Franciscan Sisters of the Sac- 
red Heart. 

Sister Mary Sean, the former Sheila Gurnett, 
daughter of Gail and the late Mary Cassidy Gur- 
nett, and a twin sister Sr. Vincetta, of the Order 
of St. Benedict, now stationed at Nauvoo, 111. 

Sister Mary Vincetta, is the former Nora Gur- 
nett, daughter of Gail and the late Mary Cassidy 
Gurnett, and a twin sister of Sr. Sean of the Sisters 
of the Holy Cross, now stationed at Holy Cross 
Seminary Notre Dame, Indiana. 

It is interesting to note that of the five nuns, 
three have the distinction of being registered nurs- 
es and two are twins. — Grace Smith McClure 

DePue Congregational Church 

The Rev. E. Paddock recorded his unsuccessful 
attempt in 1880 to establish a church in the village. 
But a year later he was asked to return, "Because 
the recent election had changed the complexion 
of the town." 

He started Sunday school in the school base- 
ment, and through many adverse conditions, con- 
tinued to hold services. Eventually a church was 
organized. He and his followers, besides begging 

for funds to finance a church, put in many hard 
days work building and painting it. 

The building was dedicated in 1886 as a Con- 
gregational church and served the people until 
1925. There were twenty-two charter members in 
the 1886 church. Two remain, Lillian and Elizabeth 
Banschbach, whose ages are ninety and ninety- 
two, respectively. 

Ministers of the church include Reverends W. 


p. Pease 1886-87; E. A. Paddock 1887-?; Parker Hur- 
less 1889-94; M. Williams 1894-96; D. J. Torrence 
1897-99; T. R. Edgerton 1900-01; M. C. Elliott 1901-02; 
Parker Hurless 1902-06; W. Pierce 1906-07; H. F. 
Hegner 1907-09; T. R. Edgerton 1909-10; F. H. An- 
derson 1912-14; W. W. Hart 1914-15; F. C. Carpen- 
ter 1916-18; I. C. Campbell 2 months, F. L. Breen 
6 months; John Dornhoeffer 1919-28; A. B. Miller 
1928-30; C. B. Gould 1930-36; H. Putney 1936-40; 
S. Lee 1941-43; J. S. Shelby 1943-44; L. Jones 1944- 
48; J. Harper 1949-57; R. Kistler 1958-59; G. Zilliac 
May 8, 1960, who is the present pastor. 

In 1920, an adult Sunday school class organized 
by the Rev. J. Dornhoeffer was called The Hurless 

Memorial Bible Class, in honor of the late Parker 
Hurless. Of the fourteen charter members only 
three remain, Fred Stuber, Mrs. W. Richardson and 
Mrs. Hugh Davis. Other charter members were 
Mrs. Martha Keim, Mrs. Albert Frey, Mrs. J. Graham, 
Mrs. Lloyd Hurless, Mrs. C. Blindt, Frank Ellis, Mrs. 
Fred Stuber, Miss Lynn Smith, Mrs. J. Coppens, D. 
C. Evans, and Mrs. J. McClain, teacher. Mrs. Nora 
O'Byrne was teacher for many years. 

The Ladies Aid was organized in the early 
church, and their fund raising projects have aided 
tremendously in the financial upkeep of the church. 
They meet monthly in homes. 

Setta Frey, 87, One of DePue's Oldest Citizens 

Miss Setta Frey, now eighty-seven years old, 
was one of the first officers. She played an import- 
ant part in the growth of the society, having served 
as president over forty years before retiring. 

The five Ladies' Aid circles combined member- 
ship is seventy. Mrs. Clarence Herzog is president. 
As far as could be determined, the two remaining 
charter members are Miss Setta Frey and Mrs. W. 

The present brick edifice costing $31,000 was 
erected in 1925, during the ministry of the Rev. J. 
Dornhoeffer. Individual contributions, and a sub- 
stantial one from the New Jersey Zinc Company, 
swelled the building fund. 

The auditorium with balcony is finished in 
fumed oak and seats three hundred people. The 
Gratian pipe organ was dedicated in 1926. Mrs. 
Elva R. Heylmun was organist. 

An amplification chimes system was dedicated 
May 30, 1948. It was a gift from Mrs. Marcella 
Joosten, Peoria, Illinois, and Mrs. Ireta Bremer, Dan- 
ville, Illinois, in memory of their parents, Mr. and 
Mrs. Albert Frey, who were faithful active members 
of the church. 

Other families who played an important part 
in the advancement of the early church are the 
Smiths (Nora O'Byrne's parents), Frank Ellis, Jacob 
Lusingers, Banschbachs, and Hurlesses. 


Church organizations are the Men's Fellowship 
organized in 1950 by the Rev. J. Harper. The group 
helps considerably in the upkeep of the church, 
the parsonage and grounds. 

The Ladies' Guild is the outgrowth of a Sunday 
school class called Philathea. Mrs. Lloyd Hurless 
was teacher. In 1923 under the leadership of Mrs. 
H. Davis, the group became the Ladies' Missionary 
Society and met weekly. In 1931 it was called the 
Young Ladies' Guild, and later changed to Ladies' 
Guild. It meets monthly and its membership is 
forty-nine. Charter members are still active. Mrs. 
Ethel Knauf was a former teacher of the class. 

The Pilgrim Fellowship is a young people's 
group and was organized in 1952 by the Rev. John 

There are junior and senior choirs under the 

direction of Mrs. Louis Yuvan, with Mrs. Warren 
Boyer as organist. 

The Young Couple's Club, a social group, was 
organized in 1961, by the Rev. George Zilliac. 

Clarence Herzog, Sunday school superintend- 
ent, is assisted in the junior department by Mrs. 
Thomas Glover; in the primary by Mrs. Paul Jen- 
sen, and the Cradle Roll with Mrs. Ransom Bur- 
den. Mrs. H. G. Hixon, Jessie Lange and Marie 
Baumer were active Sunday school workers for 
many years. 

A board of trustees, deacons, and deaconesses 
manages the affairs of the church. The church 
membership is three hundred. There are seven 
junior deacons. 

In 1961, the members voted to merge with the 
United Church of Christ. — Nola Glover 

Congregational Church 1886 

Congregational Church 1961 


Pilgrim Park Youth Camp 

The summer camping site of the lUinois Con- 
gregational Conference of Central Illinois, is a short 
distance northwest of DePue. 

Dr. Glen Lindley, former northern area super- 
intendent, is credited with the establishment of the 

camp. In 1946, he arranged for two gifts of land, 
from Miss Lynn Smith and Mrs. Marie Burnett, for 
the original 30-acre site. Additional land was ac- 
quired in 1952. 

Ministers and laymen from the area churches. 

Pilgrim Park Located West of DePue on Route 29 

under the leadership of Dr. Lindley, erected the 
present dining hall and cabins. They held the dedi- 
cation services in 1947. Since then there have been 
additional buildings, the newest is shower and 
toilet facilities in the girls' area. 

A pool was the project of the Rev. John Harper, 
camp manager from 1949 through 1957, while he 
was pastor of the DePue church. He is now minister 
in Spring Valley Congregational church. The pool 
is named in his honor. 

Delegations of youth from area churches and 
various religious groups are registered from June 
through September. 

The Rev. W. Dupree, Bureau, became camp 
manager in 1958, and has continued to develop and 
maintain the park. There are swinging bridges 
and many beautiful trails in the park. 

Outdoor worship is regularly scheduled on Ves- 
per Point, where a huge concrete cross stands amid 
trees and shrubs. 

There are at least 15 cottages, each costing 
$400, and bearing the name of the church sponsor- 
ing it. There is a huge dining hall, medical center, 
canteen, an assembly chapel hall and a modern 
equipped kitchen. 

Interurban Depot Now Dr. J. L. Foresman's Office 


DePue Schools 

We have depended on records of the late Mrs. 
91bert Frey to bring together the history of early 
education in DePue. We quote: "The first record of 
any school in the village goes back to when there 
were only six families in the settlement. School 
was held every Saturday afternoon in the Martin 
Young, Sr., home with his son, Martin, Jr., as the 

The first school house was built in 1858, and 
furnished with a bell which remained in use until 
1928. Mrs. Litchfield was the teacher in this one 
room, crudely furnished school. The building is 
still standing at Third and Lake Streets. Remodeled 
in 1928, it is presently the home of Mr. and Mrs. 
Ira Searl. 

In 1874, a fine new brick building was erected 
on the corner of Second and Pleasant streets, ll 
had only two rooms and it was soon found neces- 
sary to convert the basement into a third class 
room. Mr. Hill was the principal and directors were 
William Q. Smith, Martin Banschbach and Ed. Tin- 

In the years 1884-1885, F. Brainerd was a 
teacher and his old record book revealed some of 
the students were Elizabeth and Lillie Banschbach, 

Lisetta Frey, Dolly Luchsinger, Charlie Pope, Philip 
Link, George Smith, Willie and Freddie Heitz. The 
first three named still survive. 

The first class to graduate from the two year 
high school in 1895 included only three students: 
Mamie Hahn, Bertha Baumer, and Lottie Kellogg. 
W. D. Peck was the teacher. 

In 1896, there were seven in the two-year grad- 
uating class: Hattie Powers, Lulu Powers, Mary 
Sullivan, Anna Throne, Hattie Smith Anna Yocks 
and Setta Seeburger. The last two survive. H. Per- 
rin was the teacher. 

With the establishment of the Zinc Company 
here about 1904, the population increased rapidly 
and in 1906, it was necessary to build a temporary 
frame building. Only five teachers were employed 
in 1907-08, all DePue residents. They were H. N. 
Larens, principal, Eleanor Johnson, Laurette Haz- 
lett, Alma Smith, and Florence Hindle. 

In 1914 the brick building was razed and the 
frame building sold to be subsequently remodeled 
into the present Marliere flats. A large modern 
brick building was erected that year at a cost of 

7',.t „^;k.8l _Da»V.. Ill- 

DePue Schools 1874 - 1907 - 1914 

With the development of the Zinc Plant, more 
families moved to DePue with a resulting increase 
in school enrollment. Between the years 1900 to 
1930, the enrollment increased sevenfold. In 1925, 
more space was imperative and an addition was 
built to comprise the elementary grade rooms and 
the gymnasium-auditorium, at a cost of $75,000. 

Previous to 1917, there were but ten grades in 
the school. The Class of 1917, numbering seven 
girls and one boy, was the first to receive diplomas 
following completion of the four year high school 

In 1928, the first year book of the school was 
published. Thomas Blanco, a member of the Jun- 
ior Class, gave it its name "Recuerdo" a Spanish 
word meaning remembrance. 

Among the superintendents who have served 
the DePue school are J. T. Finn, S. G. Irwin, C. G. 
Wilson, O. M. Smith, David Calvert, F. Harrington, 
J. C. Wiedrich, W. HoUoway, Ray Stutz, 1. C. John- 
son, and the present Thomas Leeson. 

In 1954, DePue voters voted "yes" to issue 
bonds of $240,000 to make necessary additions and 
improvements to the school building, which had 
again become inadequate. The kindergarten and 
two elementary classes were conducted in build- 
ings outside the school. 

The old "gym" was converted into class rooms, 
and a new "gym" was built on property north of 
the school. The new 91 ft. x 130 ft. gymnasium is 
constructed of concrete block, with a roof of steel 
trusses. It has an acoustical ceiling and recessed 


lighting. It will seat 1200. The 50 ft. x 84 ft. gym 
floor of hard maple is large enough for two gym 
classes to be conducted simultaneously. 

The faculty for the year 1960-61 is headed by 
Thomas Leeson, superintendent, and 
Mrs. Edith Serkes — kindergarten 
Mrs. Edna Henley — first grade 
Miss Angeline Lusinger — second grade 
Miss Jessie Lange — third grade 
Mrs. Nelle Kelly — fourth grade 
Mrs. Gordon Grahame — fourth grade 
Mrs. Dorothea Yuvan — fifth grade 
Mrs. Bernice Bryant — sixth grade 
Miss Marie Baumer — seventh grade 
Mrs. Blanche Widmar — seventh grade 
Mrs. Amelia Sticken — eighth grade 
Miss Geneva Vickery — eighth grade 

High School Faculty 

Philip Sawlaw — chemistry, physics, general 
science, science 8 

Donald Talbot — coast, boys P.E., biology. 

Frank Shoufer — music 

Robert Lewis — industrial arts, arts 8, grade 
school coach, driver training 

Meyer Serkes — typing, shorthand, bookkeep- 

John Orolin — mathematics 

Mrs. Marcia Tuttle — home ec, home ec 8, 
family living 

Miss Elsie Gurnett — U. S. and world history, 
civics and American Democracy. 

Mrs. Robert Lewis — girls physical education. 

Mrs. Louise Heck — English 

Miss Lupe Ponce — Spanish and speech 

Mrs. Barbara Belski — secretary 

The Board of education is Melvin Hahn, presi- 
dent, V/illiam Glovei, secretary, Donald Bosnich, 
J. S. Haynes, Harold Maloney, and Henry Laczew- 

Present enrollment is 306 students in the grades 
and 127 in the high school. 

Main Street Looking West 

Main Street Looking East 


History of DePue Organizations 

"When Alexis de Tocqueville traveled in the 
United Stales during Jackson's administration (1829- 
1837) studying American habits and customs, he 
was astounded by Ihe number of civic societies and 
in his "Democracy in America" he wrote: 'In no 
country in the world has the principle of association 
been more successfully used, or applied, to a great- 
er multitude of objects than in America ... In the 
United States associations are established to pro- 
mote the public safety, commerce, industry, moral- 
ity and religion. 

'There is no end which the human will despair 
of attaining through the combined power of indiv- 
iduals combined in a society.' " — From Beard's 
Basic History of the United States. 


The first large civic group we know of in DePue 
was a Miners' Union formed about 1889, with a 
membership of approximately 65. 

Many men from DePue, numbering sometimes 
lip to 100, were employed in the coal mine in Mar- 
guette, known in early days as Loceyville. Old 
timers tell of the hardships endured by the miners 
and their families during a long strike. Fish was 
Ihe only free food obtainable and the local fisher- 
men often made special hauls in the lake for the 
benefit of the unemployed miners who eagerly 
helped with the seining. A not uncommon sight 
during the strike, was the bobbing pit lamps worn 
by the miners, which could be seen across the lake 
as the strikers fished at night. 

The DePue men who worked in the Marquette 
mine walked both ways on the railroad tracks, a 
distance of two and one-half miles. In the dark 
winter mornings and early evening darkness the 
lighted pit caps lighted the long walk via the rail- 
road ties. 


There was a time before the town "boomed' 
"when boating was the main diversion and many 
boots were anchored along the north shore of the 
Jake. Gradually there was competition and so in 
■a small way, races began. Inboard motors were 
used then and we are told of a long boat built for 
racing known as "The Ugly Duckling" which came 
jrom Peoria. There would be a "handicap race " 

which nevertheles was always won by the "Duck- 

These early races led to the forming from time 
to time of boat clubs which are dimly remembered. 
The name of one was the "Nassau." There was a 
later club that had summer picnics at Riverside 
Park on the south bank of the Illinois River. Some 
of the members were: M. T. Hazlett, F. L. Powers, 
Alfred Lawrence, Robert Hoffman, Louis Feurer, 
John H. Goering and James Brennan. 

Labor Day celebrations featuring boat races 
started more than forty years ago. This led to the 
need of an organized group to take charge of the 
event. American Legion members F. E. Peterson 
and J. P. Helmer and Commander Sanford Deal 
met with business men. Dr. Wm. Steele, F. J. Rauh 
and Matt Fassiso and organized the present DePue 
Boat Club in 1931. 

Dr. Wm. Steele was elected Commodore and 
F. J. Rauh, Secretary. Mr. Rauh, owner of the local 
telephone exchange, owns a sound system and 
broadcast all of the events of the day including the 

With the exception of a few years during the 
war, the Labor Day celebration has been an annual 
event, and 1960 was the tenth year that the Divis- 
ional Championship races have been held here. 
This year, the A.P.B.A. National Outboard Cham- 
pionship races will be the feature of the DePue 
Centennial, Sept. 13-18, replacing the annual Labor 
Day event. 

The Boat Club has an important port in the 
community. To make it easier for boat owners to 
launch their craft, the club has built a concrete run- 
way down to the water's edge on Lake Street. 
There is also a parking area there. They have built 
a pier which is used by swimmers and fishermen. 

The Club has leased a large plot of ground 
west of town on Route 29, formerly known as Fow- 
ler's Grove, to be used for picnics. There are fa- 
cilities for cooking; and telephone service is 
provided. A shelter has recently been built by the 
Club. The park is available for use upon request. 

Present officers of the Boat Club are Erven 
Floyd, Commodore, F. J. Rauh, Secretary, and James 
Bryant, Treasurer. 


DePue Fire Truck Purchased in 1961 


Although the Firemen's Association, with twen- 
ty volunteer members is probably the smallest or- 
ganization in town, it is one of, if not the, most im- 
portant. It was organized May 4, 1892, by George 
Beyer, Wm. Giesey, Peter J. Wolter, Simon Huber 
and Frank Frey. 

Recently an up-to-date new fire truck has been 
purchased at a cost of $13,000, and the old true!: 
has been rebuilt and modernized. A new building 
to house equipment will be built on the southwest 
corner of the Zinc Company property. This will 

make fire-fighting equipment available on both 
sides of the railroad tracks, a safety measure long 
contemplated by the firemen. 

The firemen have only one fund-raising event 
during the year, the annual dace in January. Tic- 
kets are mailed to all property holders. F. J. Rauh 
is fire chief; Anton Grbac and John Wosik, asst. 
fire chiefs; John Marple, president; Fred Rauh, Jr., 
secretary and treasurer. Fred Rauh, Sr., is also 
president of the Illinois Valley Firemen's Commun- 
ity Association which comprises twenty-eight com- 

M. W. A. Band, DePue — 191 1 


There is no record of the first band in DePue 
but a few of the older residents remember it as the 
Woodman Band directed by F. L. Powers, who gave 
instructions. The group gave local and out-of-town 

In 1926, the local post of the American Legion 
decided to organize a drum and bugle corps. Not 
enough members were interested, so starting a 

brass band was discussed, with an invitation ex- 
tended to anyone who was interested. Meeting 
with a representative from a Peoria music store, 
Mr. Vernone Galster, a band was organized with 
about sixty members, many of whom had never 
played an instrument. Officers were elected with 
J. P. Helmer, president; Leo 'Walker, vice-president; 
'Walther Hasse, secretary-treasurer, Harry Heitz, 
librarian. Rehearsals were held in Fowler's Hall. 


Arrangements were made whereby the members 
could rent their instruments and take instruction 
from Mr. Galster. 

When the band had progressed sufficiently to 
give weekly concerts, money was needed to fin- 
ance the purchase of band arrangements and pay 
the director. A band tax for this purpose was voted 
by citizens of the village and the name was chang- 
ed to DePue Municipal Band. After the death of 
Mr. Galster, the band was under the leadership of 
several directors including: Albert Sweet, Leonard 
Bertrand, and the present director, Vincent Cinotto. 

Summer concerts are held in conjunction with 
ice cream socials sponsored by the various DePue 

Present officers are: Louis Machek, president; 
Homer Graham, vice-president; Paul Van Cleave, 
secretary-treasurer; Neber Pizzamiglio, manager; 
and Primo Chiesi, librarian. 


Lodge No. 951, A.F & A.M. was organized Oct. 
10, 1912, with 26 charter members. D. C. Wray was 
the first Worshipful Master, and Harvey Seeley, 
senior warden. The first meetings were held in 
the old Odd Fellows Hall. When N. L. Bremer, a 
charter member of the lodge, built his clothing store 
on the corner of Fourth and Pleasant streets, the 
upper story was completely furnished and carpet- 
ed and used as the Masonic Hall. In 1928, the 
Masonic Building Association bought a building 
on East Fourth street, their present headquarters. 

Adolph Ristou is Worshipful Master; Harry 
Marple, Senior Warden, Walther Hasse, Secretary; 
and Leo Walker, Treasurer. 


The Slovenian Lodges, with a large member- 

ship, are affiliated with the National organization. 
They are organized for both fraternal and insurance 
purposes. In 1927, they purchased a store building 
on the corner of Trenton and Willow Streets, from 
Nick Raptis, who had occupied it as a fruit store. 
It has been extensively remodeled from time to 
time, the basement now being equipped with fa- 
cilities for cooking and serving parties. In 1957 
the entire front of the building was rebuilt and 

The first group, known as the Slovenian Na- 
tional Benefit Society, was organized in 1907, with 
13 members. The late John Slatner Sr., was the 
first president. The present officers are John Yuvan 
Sr., president; John Zugich, secretary; John Blatnick, 
treasurer. The present membership is 140 adults 
and about 75 juveniles. 

The American Fraternal Union No. 130 started 
in 1922, with 18 members, the late Igaatz Jontz be- 
ing the first president. Now there are about 50 
adult members and 30 juveniles carrying insurance. 
John Kopina Sr., is president; Joe Kerzan, secretary; 
John Blatnick, treasurer. 

Slovenian Lodge No. 754, S.N.P.J. was organ- 
ibed in 1938, as an insurance group only, with a 
membership of about 50. Louis Machek, the first 
president, still heads the group. Joe Zoran is secre- 
tary, and Mrs. Louis Mashek, treasurer. 

The Slovenian Women's Union met first on 
Dec. 19, 1937, and elected Mrs. Mary Stupar presi- 
dent. She still presides at the monthly meetings of 
the group. Serving with her are Mrs. Anton Jer- 
menc, secretary; Mrs. John Zabavnik, treasurer; Mrs. 
John Spolar, recording secretary. There are about 
39 members. 


Banschbach Home on Left; Rhyne Ellis Home on Right 



Of the four service organizations in DePue, 
the American Legion Lloyd Knowlton Post No. 327 
was first, organizing in 1919, with 54 members. 
The first commander was J. F. Scott. James Harmon 
is the present commander, Frank Kuhar, vice-com- 
mander; Homer Graham, adjutant. Meetings are 
held the first Monday of the month in the Water 
Works building. 

They assist the DePue Boat Club with the Labor 
Day celebrations. The American Legion has been 
awarding medals annually to the three top graduat- 
ing seniors in the high school for scholarship, ath- 
letics, and activities since 1940. The American Le- 
gion name plate plaque in the school was started 
in 1930. Sanford Deal, Legion member, has been 
in charge of this project for many years. 

Timothy E. Sullivan, service officer of the DePue 
post, has held county and stcrte offices, in both the 
Legion and 40 and 8 organizations. 


The American Legion Auxiliary was organized 
in 1927, with Mrs. William Knowlton, the first presi- 
dent. The present membership is 46, and the of- 
ficers: Mrs. Frank Robeck, president; Mrs. Frank 
Kuhar, first vice-president; Mrs. Joseph Salavanski, 
second vice-president; Mrs. Timothy Sullivan, sec- 
retary; Mrs. William Sullivan, treasurer; and Mrs. 
Clyde Rhyne, chaplain. 

In 1952, Mrs. Timothy Sullivan served as state 
president of the Legion Auxiliary. Mrs. Leota Dun- 
terman has served as state chairman of Civil De- 


The Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4602 was 
organized in 1945, with Forrest Peterson elected 

commander. The present membership is 146 and 
officers are: Ray Spayer, commander; Michael 
Schroeder, senior vice-commander; Stanley Piascyk, 
quartermaster; Ray Steim, post advocate. The VFW 
home, on First St., was built in 1948, and cleared 
of indebtedness in 1951. 

For a number of years, the VFW sponsored 
a marble tournament every spring. In 1948, a 
DePue player, Frank Hrovat, Jr., won the state 
tournament and placed fourth in the National tour- 
nament, held in Denver, Colo. The VFW post helps 
finance the community Halloween and Christmas 


The V.F.W. Auxiliary started in 1946, with Mrs. 
Frank Baum, as first president. Membership now is 
55 and the officers are as follows: Mrs. Wm. Miller, 
president; Mrs. Vincent Lawniczak, senior vice- 
president; Mrs. William Laicoff, junior vice-presi- 
dent; Mrs. Frank Baum, secretary; Mrs. Slyvester 
Marciniak, treasurer; Mrs. Marion Kopytkiewicz, 
chaplain. Meetings are held the first Tuesday of 
the month. They sponsor the Girl Scouts. 


The first meeting of the Parent-Teacher Asso- 
ciation was held on March 4, 1927, with Supt. J. C. 
Wiedrich presiding. Both Mr. and Mrs. Wiedrich 
were enthusiastic leaders in getting the organiza- 
tion started. Attendance at the first meeting was 
85, in April, 1961 it was over 100. 

Officers for 1961-62 are Vincent Lawniczak, 
president (serving his second term) Mrs. Frank 
Kuhar, vice-president; Mrs. Daniel Kopina, secre- 
tary; Edward Peterson, treasurer; Thomas Leeson, 
superintendent. Credit for the membership of 402 
is given to Mr. and Mrs. Edward Rosinski, who 

City Hall Used Until 1908 


have been membership chairmen for two years. 
J. S. Haynes, legislative chairman for some time, 
keeps the organization posted on current legislation. 

The well-kept history of the organization in the 
form of minutes and programs was made available 
for research. Interesting is a list of all of the offi- 
cers since the first meeting. Mrs. Charles Bates was 
the first president, F. W. Krueger, vice-president, 
Mrs. D. N. Tinker, secretary; John A. Gurnett, trea- 

Mrs. J. W. Heylmun, third president of the 
DePue P-TA and now living in Oak Park, went on 
to become vice-president of the National Congress 
of Parents and Teachers. While living in DePue 
she started a Mother-Singers group and has direct- 
ed the Mother-Singers groups at both State and 
National Conventions. 

Going through the minutes and historian's 
booklets we are reminded of the many projects the 
P-TA has sponsored through the years. The latest, 
approved in October, 1960, was granting a scholar- 
ship to L-PO Junior College to a high school senior. 
Don Latchford was chosen for this honor and the 
presentation was made at the Class Night program 
May 12, 1961, by Mr. Lawniczak. At the October 
1960 meeting it was voted to sponsor Cub Scouts, 
Boy Scouts and Explorer Scouts. Other note-worthy 
projects of the past were: Infant Welfare Station, 
Summer Roundup, Open House for high school stu- 
dents and the Thrift Shop, (the latter under the dir- 
ection of Mrs. Hixon), the Mother-Singers, Room 
Mothers, and Homemaking Group. The annual 
Halloween party has always been sponsored by 
the P-TA. 


Children in our great United States are, taken 
as a whole, probably the most privileged in the 
world. DePue children were especially favored 
when in 1950, the DePue Booster Club was organ- 
ized, their main purpose being to plan recreation 
for children of the community. The hearty support 
of the townspeople is evidenced in the membership 
of 766, the largest organization ever formed in De- 
Pue. Ray Vega was membership chairman the 
past year, and Harold Banich will have the job 
this year. Officers for 1961-62 are: Manuel Salcedo, 

president; Robert Piletic, first vice-president; Don- 
ald Bosnich, second vice-president; Mrs. George 
Meagher, treasurer; Miss Lois Croissant, secretary; 
directors: Mrs. Genevieve Croissant, Joseph Grilc, 
Mrs. Edward Peterson, Harold Banish, Ray Vega, 
and Miss Betty Suarez. 

The first meeting was held March 7, 1950, with 
Edward Kmieciak as the first president. Others 
who were instrumental in getting the club started 
were Victor Ruggerio, first vice-president, Edward 
Jermenc, second vice-president, Joe Zoran, secre- 
tary and treasurer; and the late John Dobrich and 
Ray Staskiewicz, directors. 

The two main projects of the Booster Club are 
the annual Easter Egg Hunt and the summer swim- 
ming program. Until 1959, when the women were 
invited to join, the men colored the 500 eggs and 
numbered them to correspond with numbered priz- 
es in store windows. 

During several of the warmest weeks in July, 
the Booster Club furnishes transportation for school 
children to go the Peru swimming pool. The Boost- 
er Club also helps in financing the Halloween 
party, the children's Christmas party, the annual 
Athletic banquet. Once a year they take the boys' 
basketball teams to Chicago and also give the 
cheerleaders an outing. They have also contributed 
to the expense of keeping the Recreation Center 
operating. The club meets in the Recreation Center. 


Although there are no records of the earliest 
group of Boy Scouts, through the cooperation of 
Mrs. Morse Bryant, whose husband belonged to 
the first known group of Boy Scouts, we learn that 
a troup was formed on April 4, 1912, under the 
direction of Rev. F. H. Anderson. 

This was a lone Scout troop, leaning more to 
military training, and it continued until Jan. 1, 1914. 
On March 1, 1916, another group was started under 
the direction of Rev. F. C. Carpenter, with Mr. 
Tusick as Scout Master. 

In 1924, Ernest Jordan was Scoutmaster of a 
troop, with James Meagher, D. N. Tinker, Frank 
Cantwell, Louis Feurer and James Brennan on the 
troop committee. 

DePue Boy Scouts 


The National Boy Scouts were chartered by 
Congress, June 15, 1916 and new charters are sent 
to each troop annually. The first charter on hand 
for the DePue group, dated April 30, 1934, lists 
Frederick Voorhaar as Scoutmaster. The 1935 char- 
ter lists John McKinstry as Scoutmaster with William 
Tyrer, assistant. McKinstry served as Scoutmaster 
until he left for army service in 1941. 

A. L. Theivagt, took over in 1943. In 1944, Her- 
bert Hensey was assistant for Theivagt. Frank 
Haywood became Scoutmaster in 1945, Raymond 
Stutz in 1946-1948. In 1949-1950, Gilbert Johnson, 
1951 to 1955, Robert Hensey. John Herzog, adviser 
to the Explorers, became Scoutmaster in 1955, and 
served until 1960. 

Last July, a group of Explorers, with Scout- 
master Herzog and his father, C. W. Herzog, at- 
tended the National Jamboree in Colorado Springs. 

For four years, beginning in 1956, the Scouts 
sponsored the Inboard Boat races, held in June. 
Included in the event were the first drag boat races 
held in the middle west. 

Clarence R. Herzog became the only Eagle 
Scout to earn that award in DePue, in May, 1953. 
About that time his father, C. W. Herzog, received 
his Silver Beaver award. 

Present leaders are as follows: H. John Meyer, 
Scoutmaster, with Louis Muzzarelli, Dr. James 
Foresman, John Thomas, Pete Dobrich and Everett 
Simkins serving on the troop committee. John Bubon 
has been appointed Institutional representative by 
the P-TA. Previous to 1960, the Scouts were spon- 
sored by the Congregational Church. Since then 
the charter is issued to the P-TA. 

John Orion is advisor of the Explorer Post. 
There are 28 Explorers in Post 57, a gain of 100 per- 
cent in membership since the fall of 1960. 

Robert Piletic, Cub Master, has also been ap- 
pointed Neighborhood Commissioner, and Henry 
Benkse, chairman of Cub Committee. 


There is no record of early Girl Scouts in DePue, 
but we know that Mrs. William Kelsey, whose hus- 
band was Plant Superintendent at that time, or- 
ganized a group of Camp Fire girls. From 1923 to 
1927, Mrs. T. E. Sullivan led a group of Girl Scouts, 
assisted by Mrs. Andrew Beckley, Miss Ethel John- 
son, and Miss Phyllis Croisant (now Mrs. Ernest 

Recorded in the fiftieth anniversary program of 
the Congregational church is the changing of a 
group of Camp Fire girls organized in 1931, under 
direction of Rev. C. B. Gould to a Girl Scout troop. 
Miss Marie Baumer was captain, with Mrs. Bernice 
Bryant, Mrs. Elsie Brand and Miss Mazine Wagner, 
lieutenants. Mrs. Edward Powers was chairman of 
the committee appointed by the church. Later Miss 
Pearl Glover with Mrs. Bryant assisting, carried on 
the work. 

There is now an active group of Girl Scouts, 
affiliated with the Illinois Valley council. The groups 
are sponsored by the V.F.W. Auxiliary and directed 
by an appointed committee; Mrs. Edward Widmar, 

Mrs. Al Mentgen, Mrs. Donald Bosnich, Genevieve 
Kopina, and Mrs. Nora Bryant. 

Leaders of the Intermediate group are Miss 
Betty Suarez and Miss Darlene Risberg. Brownie 
leaders are: Mrs. John Widmar, Mrs. Jos. Haywood, 
Mrs. Vincent Lawniczak, Mrs. Robert Harrison and 
Mrs. William Laicoff. 


The DePue Businessmen's Association was or- 
ganized April 26, 1950, with Louis Muzzarelli, presi- 
dent; Louis Machek, secretary-treasurer, and John 
Rostagno, Hyman Dobovski and Victory Ruggerio, 
directors. Officers for 1961-62 are F. J. Rouh, presi- 
dent; Louis Machek, vice-president; C. W. Herzog, 
treasurer; directors for one, two and three years: 
John Kopina, James Bryant and Henry Benkse, re- 

The association cooperates in financing the 
children's parties for Halloween and Christmas and 
takes charge of all business affairs in the village. 

LOCAL 5212 

The United Steel Workers of America, Local 
No. 5212 organized in 1955, with George Barnes, 
Jr., as first president. In January, 1960, the organ- 
ization purchased a building on East St., remodeled 
it extensively and redecorated the interior. The 
present membership is 299. Officers are John Slat- 
ner, president; Charles Athey, Jr., vice-president; 
Jos Lopez, recording secretary; Ray Spayer, finan- 
cial secretary, John Lavrin, Jr., treasurer. 


The local branch of the American Red Cross 
was reorganized in 1957 with Mrs. Paul Jensen, 
chairman. The present officers are: Mrs. Frank 
Robeck, chairman; Rev. George Zilliac, vice-presi- 
dent; Mrs. Harold Moloney, secretary; John McKin- 
stry, treasurer; A. A. George, service officer, Mrs. 
Jaul Jensen, director, Mrs. Ed Powers, publicity. 

Mrs. John Restetich, Jr., was fund drive chair- 
man for 1961. In the fall of 1960, a home nursing 
course was taught by Mrs. George Meagher and 
Mrs. Walter Walk, registered nurses, who had been 
trained for the course at Red Cross headquarters 
in Princeton. Sixty-seven women received diplomas 
for completion of the course. 

Aside from the Miners' Union, the first organ- 
izations in DePue were probably the fraternal so- 
cieties which offered both sociability and insurance. 
The I.O.O.F. took out a charter in 1880 with 37 mem- 
bers. The Modern Woodmen of America started 
in 1890 with 6 members. Both groups were active 
for many years, but at present there is but a small 
beneficial membership in both organizations. Like- 
wise, the Mystic Workers, was organized in 1903, 
with 24 members. A number of members maintain 
life insurance policies with the company, now 
known as the Fidelity Life Association. Until her 
death. Miss Mary Sullivan was secretary. 

Two other early fraternal groups, the Fraternal 
Toilers, organized in 1901, with 80 members, and 
the Lodge Constance Rebekah, organized in 1904, 
are no longer active, nor is the Lady Maccabees 
Lodge, another fraternal organization. Starting in 


1905, with 29 members, the Royal Neighbors Lodge 
was active for many years. Now there are only 
beneficial numbers with Mrs. John Blum collecting 
the dues and looking after their interests. Former 
members of the Modern Woodmen and the Royal 
Neighbors remember the fine drill teams which 
these groups had. 

Mrs. O. M. Hagen was director of the ladies' 
group. She was a snappy, capable leader of the 
drill team which was much in demand for affairs 
in surrounding towns where they put on their drill 
work. The Woodmen also had a drill corps, band 
members participating. The band director, F. L. 
Powers, also led the drill team. 

The Sefino Club was another which had no of- 
ficers, only four members and no set meeting date, 
but they met for many years with Mrs. J. P. Cough- 
lin, an invalid confined to a wheel chair. 

Most of the DePue organizations contribute 
toward maintaining the Recreation Center. The 
New Jersey Zinc Company provides the building, 
equipment and heat. The Center is closed during 
the summer. During the 1960-61 school term it was 
open three evenings a week, with mothers of the 
school children taking turns supervising. Affairs 
of the Center are in charge of a Youth Commission 
composed of Vere Rhyne, chairman, Mrs. Grace 
Ellis and Miss Lupe Ponce, members. 

To the officers and others who so kindly co- 
operated in gathering information for this chapter, 
I want to express my appreciation. 

— Mrs. Florence Hindle Powers (Mrs. Edward) 

The DePue State Bank 

A charter was granted to the DePue State Bank 
on Dec. 27, 1904. The state auditor of public ac- 
counts had issued a permit for the opening of a 
bank in DePue on June 25, 1904. 

The first directors were: Henry Ream, Charles 
Brunner, Frank Frey, Paul Jensen, Ernst Gunther, 
Phillip Link. The first cashier was Harry F. Ream. 
The officers were Henry Ream, president; Frank 

Frey, vice-president; Harry R. Ream, cashier. 

The bank opened for business in a small build- 
ing which stood on the site of the present Recrea- 
tion Center. (The building is still in use as a storage 
shed on the Makse property,). About 1906 John 
Frey put up the present bank building. In 1848 
the bank bought it from Miss Setta Frey. 

DePue State Bank on Right; Frey Store on Left — 1 906 

Present officers are: Clarence Herzog, presi- 
dent; and president of the board of directors; Mrs. 
Alma McLaughlin, vice-president and cashier; Miss 
Mary Miscevic, assistant cashier. Serving with Her- 
zog on the board of directors are Ben Dunterman 
and Mrs. McLaughlin. 

Herzog recalls hearing his father tell of the ar- 
rival of the safe which is still in use. It was shipped 
in by rail and since it weighed nine and one-half 
tons, getting it moved to the building posed a prob- 
lem. His father brought his team and farm wagon 
into town and with their assistance it was rolled 
the block or so from the railroad tracks. 


Mr. Ream was cashier for many years. Mr. 
Herzog's employment at the bank started July 1, 
1922 and when Mr. Ream passed away he became 

Mrs. McLaughlin worked in the bank during 
vacations begining with her freshman year and 
continued until she graduated. As there was no 
opening in the DePue bank at that time she worked 
in a Princeton bank for three years. In 1928, Mr. 
Edward Brooks, who had been employed in the 

bank for many years, passed away and she re- 
turned to take his place. 

Others who have worked in the bank were Mrs. 
Grace McClure, who started in 1921 and was cash- 
ier when she left in 1930; Miss Marcella Frey, now 
Mrs. E. J. Joosten of Peoria, and Henry Toeellen of 

The bank is a member of the Federal Deposit 
Insurance Corporation. 

DePue Public Library 

In 1937, a library opened in the Water Works 
building under the N.Y.A. with Mrs. Eli Edwards 
and Edward Hypki as librarians. In 1938, Mrs. Lou- 
ise Helmer, (now Mrs. R. Eckard) was librarian 
under W.P.A. supervision. In 1941, Mrs. AUie Dihs, 
Spring Valley, was assistant librarian. In 1943, Mrs. 
Eckard resigned and Mrs. Dilts became librarian. 
The village levied a tax to maintain the library. In 
1947 it was moved to the present building which 
is owned by the New Jersey Zinc Company and 

donated to the library board which is composed 
of the following: 

In 1961 there were 590 borrowers, a total of 
6280 books and a yearly circulation of 10,386 vol- 

President — Mrs. Edward Widmar; secretary — 
Mrs. Leo Utterback; treasurer — Al George; mem- 
bers: Mrs. Harold Maloney, Daniel Kopina and 
Warren Boyer. 

DePue Telephone Company 

Local business men and farmers organized the 
Bureau County Mutual Telephone Company in 
1907. Night service began in 1908 with the late 
Elvene Monnett as operator. In 1910 it was incor- 
porated under its present name with twenty-three 
stockholders. Magneto service was replaced by 
battery installation in 1926. F. Rauh Sr., and C. 
Gieler acquired most of the stock. In 1935 Mr. Rauh 
bought all interests. 

The are 700 subscribers. A modern board was 

installed in 1950. The exchange also operates the 
fire alarms. 

Rauh is assisted by his children, Fred Rauh, 
Jr., and Mrs. Marguerite Toovey, who is secretary. 
Operators are: Mrs. J. Koptykiewicz, Mrs. M. Rauh, 
Mrs. C. Rhyne, Miss Helen Lepianka, Mrs. J. Sa- 
voure, Mrs. J. Bernatovich and Mrs. Fred Rauh, 
Jr. Mr. Rauh is DePue's oldest businessman. Mrs. 
F. Rauh, Sr., and daughter, Mrs. Adeline Conant, 
are directors. 

DePue Post Office 

The DePue Post Office was first established as 
Selby Station on March 3, 1854. The name was 
changed to Depue Post Office on May 6, 1867, and 
the spelling was changed to DePue on July 14, 1894. 

Postmasters and dates of appointments are as 

Wallace W. Barrett - March 31, 1854 

Hiram White - January 8, 1855 

Edward Tinley - July 25, 1856 

Jacob Bernhard - September 13, 1861 

Edward Tinley - November 20, 1865 

Edward Tinley - March 21, 1881 

Frank Frey - January 18, 1890. 

Mary E. Smith - July 14, 1894 

John Feltes - September 7, 1895 

Frank Frey - April 1, 1899. 

Myrtle Smith - August 1, 1913 

Forrest Peterson - December 15, 1927 

Mrs. Eugenia Spaulding - February 1, 1936 

Joseph Zoran - May 31, 1951 

Stanley Piascyk - August 15, 1952 

U.S. Postal Department, Courtesy of Stanley 

Piascyk, DePue Postmaster. 

DePue's Lake Press 

John R. Herzog opened a shop in his home in 
1944. Soon his business expanded and he moved 
into the Isaacson building. He later purchased and 
remodeled the Rex Theater and tavern building at 
119-121 East Fourth Street and set up shop. He is 

publishing a newspaper devoted exclusively to 
news of Citizen Band Radio Clubs in the U.S.A., 
called "C-B Nationwide News." The inaugural May 
edition was mailed to 6,300 Citizen Banders. 


The Illinois Power Company 

Homemakers today take for granted the clean, 
efficient power of electricity which brings, at the flip 
of a switch, — light, power, refrigeration, heat for 
a variety of purposes — and a relief from drudgery 
undreamed of at the beginning of the century. 

Many older DePue residents remember the 
kerosene lamps and the daily chore of washing 
sooty chimneys. Far more laborious was the week- 
ly washday with clothes either washed by hand 
or in a hand-operated machine. 

The water had to be carried from an outside 
well except for the few homes having a cistern 
pump in the kitchen. Water was heated in a boiler 
on the cook stove or range; so were the flat irons 
used for ironing. 

DePue made a step forward when, according to 
the village ordinance books, a franchise was grant- 
ed in 1905 to operate an electric light system. 

However, it was not until 1912 that there is a 
reference to money being appropriated, "$2200 for 
construction of an electric light system." Lines were 
put up in the village and connected with Spring 
Valley by the Brown Bros. Construction company, 
the first power company collecting for electricity 
in DePue. William Perkins, Spring Valley, now re- 
tired, was foreman of construction in this area for 
many years. 

The Mineral Point Zinc company maintained 
its own power plant. It furnished power for light- 
ing the Plant-owned homes in the Park and on 
Tower Hill as well as for use in the Plant. 

The power company, still operated by Brown 
Bros., became known as the Spring Valley Utilities. 
They sold out about 1923 to the present corporation. 

known then as the Illinois Power and Light com- 
pany, and later the Illinois-Iowa Power company. 
Leslie R. Harrison of Spring Valley, who retired in 
1959, was area manager for many years. 

Mrs. Ben Harrison, whose husband was DePue 
lineman and trouble shooter until 1949, remembers 
that when she came to DePue in 1923 Ben collected 
in the office on "pay day" until 8 p.m. 

Mrs. Leo Utterbach, who was secretary in the 
local office from 1939 until her retirement in May, 
1961, recalls that when she came to DePue, a 
monthly bill of seventy-five cents was not unusual 
for homes which now pay $10 to $12. This increase 
in consumption of power is nation-wide due to the 
manufacture of a large variety of electrical appli- 

Miss Dorris Mathews, a native of Mineral, was 
in the office from 1930 until 1939. 

Others who have been employed in the electric 
office are Miss Eleanor Richardson (Mrs. Clarence 
Herzog) in the summer of 1927; Miss Goldie Glass 
(Mrs. James Savoure) from 1927 until 1930; Miss 
Roberta Moran (Mrs. Gene Engler) for six months 
in 1939. 

Jim Stein, the present lineman and trouble 
shooter for DePue and towns west of here, moved 
to DePue with his family in 1949 following Ben 
Harrison's retirement. 

Under direction of the DePue Centennial Com- 
mittee, volunteer workers made a survey of the 
town for the Power company in June, 1961 to find 
out how many residents would be interested in 
having natural gas service. At this date (August 1, 
1961) the result of the survey is not known. 

— Florence H. Powers 

DePue's Service Records 


Due to the fact that 1961, DePue's centennial 
year, is also the Civil War centennial year, it is 
proper to recount, not only DePue's service record 
but that of the State of Illinois, too. 

From the book "The Making of Illinois" by I. F. 
Mather, AM, we quote: 

"Volumes have been written upon the part 
Illinois played in the Civil War. Our state furnished 
over 260,000 men, placing it fourth. New York, Penn- 
sylvania, and Ohio furnished more troops — but 
in 1861 each of these states had more inhabitants, 
so in proportion to her population then, Illinois fur- 
nished a greater number of soldiers than any other 
state except Kansas. 

A record of Illinois troops in the war would re- 
count weary marches and fierce battles in Texas, 
Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Georgia and oth- 
er southern states. 

Illinois troops withstood the shock of the rebels 
hosts upon the bloody fields of Shiloh, they fought 

at Perryville and Corinth; they contended at Chick- 
amauga. Missionary Ridge and Lookout Mountain. 

They waited weary weeks in the trenches 
around Vicksburg for surrender; they fired the first 
shot at Gettysburg; they marched with Sherman 
from "Atlanta to the Sea" and took their place in 
the last grand review. 

DePue's Civil War Veterans 

As correctly ascertained as possible, we find 
at least five men who enlisted from DePue to fight 
in the Civil War, namely Jacob Frey, a drummer 
boy, Charles Frey, John Frey, Jacob Luchsinger and 
George Hosier. 

Mr. Luchinger (Lusinger) was Bureau County's 
last surviving Civil War veteran. He died in 1941 
at the age of 97, lacking only 7 days of being 98. 
He was a former Senior Vice-Commander of the 
Illinois Department G.A.R. He was a member of 
Ferris Post No. 309, Princeton Civil War Veterans. 
While he was still able to travel, he attended the 
National and State G.A.R. meetings regularly. He 


Jacob Lusinger, the last Bureau 
County Civil War Veteran. Pho- 
to taken in Nelbourne, Florida in 
1 934 - age 90 years. 

had seved with the 79th Volunteers, and v/hen the 
war ended he was in Chattanooga, Tenn. 

His brother Andrew, was also a Civil War 

veteran but did not live in DePue at the time of 
enlistment. Andrew was with Sherman in his march 
to the sea. 

Benjamin Franklin Ellis, another Civil War vet- 
eran, came to DePue after the war, and resided 
here the remainder of his life. He spent some time 
in the Andersonville prison. 

Other Civil War veterans who lived in DePue 
■include Daniel, Joshua, Jacob and Mose Fox; A. N. 
Searl, David Marple, Robert Paden, Mike White, 
Bart Litchfield, Lucas Lusom, Jacob Strickmaker, 
John Eggerts, John Helmer, Daniel Tuttle, William 
Charles, Solomon Corl, John Seeburger, Charles 
Walker and Jacob Bernhardt. 


There is no record of any men having left De- 
Pue for duty in this war in 1898. However several 
Spanish American war veterans lived in DePue for 
many years: George Gleason, Charles Mavity and 
Lewis Webster. 

WORLD WAR I - 1917 

In this war our soldiers fought in Europe. De- 
Pue was proud of her quota, 116 in all. Only one 
died in service, Lloyd Knowlton in whose honor 
DePue's American Legion Post No. 327 is named. 
Thirteen of the men were recruited to the Polish 
Army and nineteen to the Serbian Army. DePue's 
citizens purchased a fair share of Liberty Bonds 
and War Stamps. 

Taken Memorial Day, 1929, Greenwood Cemetery, Bureau, 
Illinois. E. M. Turner, Squad Leader; Charles Tunis, Color 
Guard; Morgan Savage, Color Guard; L. L. Pearson, Wil- 
iam DeSpain, A. F. Kelly, J. F. Scott, R. E. Turner, F. E. Peter- 
son, J. P. Helmer, L. J. Walker, T. E. Sullivan, H. Heitz, and 
J. McKinstrey, Boy Scout bugler. 


WORLD WAR II - 1941-1945 

This war, much larger, and spread over many 
continents and oceans, required more men. Again, 
as nearly as possible to determine, there were ap- 
proximately 470 to 480 men and women from DePue 
in the service. 

There are 14 Gold Star names in the record of 
those who "gave the last full measure of devotion": 

Pvt. Orentino Alverez; PFC. Theodore Biagioni; 
Sgi. Wayne G. Buffinger; PFC. Joseph Espinosa; 
PFC. Herbert Hensey; Corp. Edward S. Krywicky; 
S/Sgt. Ivan E. May; PFC. George C. Meadowcroft; 
1st Lt. Robert P. Moran; T/15 Lester Pinter; 1st Lt. 

Carl Reistad; Pvt. Rudolph Slatner; S/Sgt. Fred 
Yuvan; PFC Honry F. Yuvan. 

Some of these boys are buried on foreign soil. 
There were nine women from DePue in the 
service during World War II: 

PFC. Gretchen Williams - WACS; Dolores Go- 
mez, Ph.M. 1 C - WAVES; T/3 Loretta Banasiewicz 

- WACS; P.M. 1 C Joan Quinn - Navy; Lt. Comdr. 
Madge M. Ellis - Navy; 1st Lt. Peggy Marguerite 
O'Bryne - V/ACS; 1st Lt. Lu Gomez - Army Nurse; 
PFC Gayle Smart - Army; 2nd Lt. Artie Mae Kelley 

- Army. 

Did You Know? 

G. M. Bryant (center), son 
of G. A.; grandson Morse, 
and great grandson, George 

The fifth generation of Bryants is starting in 
business in DePue! G. M. Bryant came to DePue in 
1902 and operated a grain elevator and coal and 
lumber business. His sons, George A. and Walter, 
operated the hardware store and later sold cars. 
Morse, son of G. A. Bryant, has continued in the 
lumber and coal business aided by his son, James, 
who now has a TV sales and repair shop. James' 
son, twelve-year-old James, is beginning to help 
his dad. 

The late Frank Cantwell joined the DePue Fire 
Department in 1921, and served as chief from 1923 
to 1955 when he resigned. 

The late Charlie Pope was Village Clerk from 
1907 to 1932 when he retired. 

George M. Bryant was secretary-treasurer of 
the DePue school board for thirty-five years. 

Fred Rauh Sr., has been affiliated with the De- 
Pue Fire Department holding various offices since 
1912. He is the present fire chief. 

Charles Savage raised many peacocks on the 
north edge of town and children gathered the pret- 
ty feathers. 

In 1903 Peter and John Wolters, carpenters, 
were paid twenty-five cents an hour. They built 
many beautiful big homes in DePue and surround- 
ing towns. Mrs. Adeline Janz, Peru, daughter of 
Peter Wolters, has many beautiful pictures of homes 
her father built. 


Oliver Keim operated a saw mill on his north 

The Andrew Szygenda family built and oper- 
ated a bakery shop in 1916-17-18 (?) on what is 
now Blum's Clothing Store. 

The Jacob Feurer family owned and operated 
a big bakery for many years in a building, now 
torn down, east of the Dwyer property. They sold 
their goods in neighboring towns. 

for and was given permission to use the council 
rooms for a temporary hospital room to remove ton- 
sils from ten or twelve school children. 

In 1946 DePue's beloved policeman, Herman 
Bansch, died. He was on the police force for twen- 
ty-five years. 

Harry Ream was village treasurer for over 
thirty years. 

Harry Jordine operated an open air theater in 
DePue in the 1920's. 

August Bansch was village hall janitor for 
many years. 

Frank Powers' orchestra was playing for danc- 
es in 1910. 

The offices of Dr. J. Forseman was the old In- 
terurban depot. 

The population of DePue in 1900 was 500; in 
1950 it was 2163, and in 1961 is 1900. 

In 1932-33 DePue had a sanded beach which 
was enjoyed by hundreds of people in DePue and 
from neighboring towns. 

There was an encampment of five hundred 
Blackfoot Indians at Lake DePue and along the 
north bluff. What is known as Mecum Hill road to- 
day was an Indian path from the bluff to the lake, 
and many Indian relics have been found in this 

Mrs. Julie Ann Trock, Mrs. Frank Ciboroski and 
Mrs. Maggie Comiskey Bansch were important wo- 
men in the village since they were midwives and 
brought many of the second and third generations 
into this world. 

In 1915 Ray Gore's bid of $2.92 a ton for coal 
was accepted by the village board. 

Ray Gore was "tea man" for the Royal Tea 
Company in DePue and neighboring towns for 
many years. 

The late Charles Isaacson was in business in 
DePue for twenty-five years. He operated a confec- 
tionery or ice cream parlor, and later the DePue 
Bottling Works and sold "pop" in this area. 

In 1924 Mrs. Loretta Seavey, Plant Nurse, asked 

It is reported that the largest family to ever live 
in DePue was the Anthony — Julie Ann Trock fam- 
ily who came to DePue in 1908. They had 19 chil- 
dren; five are living. The late Mrs. Minnie Staskie- 
wicz was one of the children. 

Mrs. Joseph Croissant, a long-time resident, 
now a patient in a Peoria hospital, is over 100 years 
old; Elizabeth Banschbach, an invalid at home is 
92, and her sister, Lilly Belle, is 91; Ernest Hasse, 
former mayor is 90. There are many residents past 
80 years old, to include Sette Frey 87, Lloyd Hurl- 
ess 86, Dan Hall 86, and Stanley Spayer 85. 



Preparing the history booklet required exten- 
sive research. Some records v/ere incomplete, and 
in a number of cases where there were no records, 
the descendants were unable to furnish facts. 

Even so, much interesting material was glean- 
ed from various sources that have been acknowl- 
edged in the different chapters. In addition, the 
village administrative records from 1866 to 1961 
were used, old property deeds, church and ceme- 
tery records verified names and dates, and old set- 
tlers gave first hand information. 

Condensing the material into a small booklet 
posed a real problem. Chapters had to be re-writ- 
ten, shortened, and many interesting facts had to 
be omitted. It is understandable that what might 
seem inconsequential to some readers will be of 
genuine interest and importance to others. May the 
booklet prove to be an interesting cherished keep- 

The committee feels privileged to have had the 
interesting experience of compiling the history. We 
want to thank everyone who helped in any way 
with the booklet. 

Mrs. Alice Deal, Mrs. Ed Powers, Mrs. Kathryn 
Godfrey, Miss Nolo Glover, Mrs. Bernice Bryant, 
Mrs. Anna Lawless, Mr. Ira Searl, and John Ellis, 
writers; Mrs. Grace McClure and Mrs. Delia Walsh, 
typists; Albert Sanger in charge of pictures; Mrs. 
Blanche Widmar and Miss Marie Baumer, proof 
readers; and cover sketching by Edward Grilc. 



This history book, which you have just read, 
was compiled by the people listed on the preced- 
ing page under Acknowledgements. They have put 
a great amount of time and effort into the writing 
of this history. Page upon page of information was 
gathered by these people. This informcrtion had 
to be broken down into various categories and 
some information had to be omitted because of the 

I had asked Mrs. Alice Deal to assume the re- 
sponsibility of gathering information and compil- 
ing this information into a history of the Village of 
DePue. Without hesitation, she readily accepted 
this position as head of our History Committee. She 
selected the other members of this committee and 
they plunged into this huge task. 

After reading this history, I know that she and 
her committee did a tremendous job. They should 
be congratulated by everyone on the outstanding 
way in which the history of DePue was written. 

There are not enough words to express my 
gratitude to Mrs. Deal and her committee. On be- 
half of the Centennial Committee — Thank you. 

Gerald R. Toovey 

General Chairman 

DePue Centennial Committee